Seek Success
By Moshe Katz
Israeli Krav International

They say "Good things come to those that wait". My life experience has taught me otherwise.

It is true that it takes wisdom to know when to push and when to let go and wait. Finding the correct balance is always a challenge and requires great wisdom. And often we make mistakes.

There are great martial arts instructors teaching in their basements and offering their skills to 4-5 students and there are quacks with huge international organizations offering dangerous and foolish training to thousands of gullible people WorldWide.

This is indeed sad.

They say the cream will rise to the top, perhaps, but we need to make our effort, we need to do our share of pushing. As Dolly Parton once said, "Sometimes you need to honk your own horn to let people know you are coming."

I recall when I heard that. I was in some small hotel in Colorado, it was my first "Krav Tour of America" and I was teaching groups on university campuses. IKI had not yet been born.

It was late at night, I was bored, so I turned on the TV, one of the perks of travel, and caught a few minutes of a Dolly Parton movie, I am not ashamed to admit it.

Believe it or not those words that she uttered in the movie in her cute Southern drawl had a huge impact on my life and on IKI.

"Darn it!" I said, "That woman is right!"

All my life I have been taught to be humble, and this is indeed a true and correct way. But even that can be taken too far. If you want to succeed in life you cannot go around telling people you are worthless.

There is no place for arrogance in Krav Maga or martial arts. And I advise you all to run like the wind from an arrogant instructor. But there are also limits to humility. Do not put yourself down.

I know a healer who always began with...well, I am not very good at this...

Well if you are not very good, thanks for letting me know and I will take my business elsewhere.

There are limits. Sometimes you have to honk your horn to let the world know that someone special is coming. Be fair, be honest, show the world the honest gift that you have to offer. You have to speak up for yourself or no one else will.

It is true that "a fool and his money are quickly separated" but let us not be the cruel trickster to take away a good man' money. We must always fight corruption.

I believe you cannot wait for your success to come, you must actively seek it.

You must believe that you deserve it, that you have something special to offer, and you must pursue your goal relentlessly but wisely.

You must seek success.

I always tell the story of how I invested in myself and developed my Krav Maga career. I purchased every new video my instructor came out with, even every new T shirt. If he offered special training - I was the first to sign up. I never stopped to think if something new will be offered. It did not matter if he was teaching how to fight with a stick, or whatever, I was there.

I arrived at class first, I left last and I was the first to pay, in cash, each month. Is it any wonder that I am his highest ranked student, ever?

And when it came to travel, I took the plunge. I invested one months income to travel and training. I traveled abroad to study Kung Fu, pressure points, Tang soo Do, Muay Thai, Brazilian Jujitsu, and all this training enhanced our current version and development of Krav Maga. That is why we are different from "IDF certified" instructors who underwent a full three weeks of training.

I was careful. I did not throw my money away. Yes, I bought many videos that were advertised in Black Belt magazine, and nearly all proved to be a total waste but...I learned what did not work.

I tried the techniques in sparring at Itay's gym, no effect. Nada. The promise to "dazzle my teachers and easily defeat my opponents' proved false.

I recall trying one particular strategy, I will not mention who's video this was, and Itay simply said, "What the hell happened to you today!"

I learned from trial and error.

If I were sick or away for half a month my evil inclination would say.."Skip the rest of the month and rejoin next month, why pay full price for half a month?" But, no! I paid full price. It was worth it to attend half a month. I never regretted it, I felt great.

And believe it or not, even if I "overpaid" I did not mind. To me the idea of supporting the school, the gym, the dojo, was important. This was my gym.

Today people see me as a success. IKI is a highly respected Krav Maga organization with branches in 30 countries and more seeking to join us daily. I have turned away many unqualified applicants. and people ask, How did you do it?

So I am telling you here

  • I was/am always proactive, I did not wait
  • I was not "penny wise, pound foolish", I invested in my training. Not buying a DVD in order to save $20?? That is no way to progress. I would cut down on food for a week rather than miss out on a new DVD from my instructor. I eat felafel with a glass of water but I did not skimp on my training.
  • I thought not only of myself, but of my teacher and our school. I believed in supporting our school. 
  • I worked and I trained, I trained and I worked. 

Tour and Train, these instructors and students came from all over the world to train with us in Israel. They invested in their training.

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