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Comtech Conceptual DVD Special This Week - Just 38 Each!

The 5 Keys to Kali
Five simple actions of the upper body form an entire
matrix of fighting and grappling skills!  High-level theory.

The 7 Secrets of Silat
More essential combative motion analysis from the arts
of the Indonesian islands in a seven part-flow drill.

Persistence: A Key To Success!

(Note from Pete: this is an older article but thought it was a good one for this time of year. January's almost done, so it's a good time to re-focus on your goals for 2020 - You can make it happen!)

Do you know anyone who is a perfectionist?  The kind of person who when they're learning something new, if they don't do it absolutely perfectly right away, they beat themselves up about it? Or they simply give up?

When working with hypnosis clients, this kind of thinking sometimes comes up because after each session I give people 'homework' to do. These assignments vary but are always related to developing whatever new habit they're coming to see me for.

For example a weight loss client may need to track their food to get a complete picture of how much they are eating, what they are eating, and when they are eating. An athlete may be given mental exercises to do alongside their physical workout such as visualizing themselves going through the 5 Keys to Kali or 7 Secrets of Silat forms in an associated, 1st person perspective to help integrate this new motor pattern.

Most people make great progress in the first few sessions, but sometimes they focus more on the occasions that they "messed up" then on all the successes they've had. For example, a pack-a-day smoker might lapse and have a single cigarette and then really beat themselves up about it. When this happens I remind them of all their good work they've done, about all the other 139 cigarettes that they didn't smoke that week, and in addition explain how it's not about perfection, it's about persistence.

Children are a great example of persistence. If they want to learn how to do something that they can't do, they will keep at it until they can do it. From crawling to walking to running to speaking, feeding and dressing ourselves, these were all big unknowns at one time that we take for granted today.

Or maybe you can remember as a kid something like learning to ride a bicycle for the first time? Did you get it on the first try, or did it take some time? I bet that you kept at it until you could ride that sucker, maybe even do wheelies or go off jumps.

The same with everything you've done in the arts from forms to sparring, it was all new at one point and now it's easy to do without any conscious thought. Kicking, for example, is now a habit in the same way that scratching your nose is, you just think about it and it happens.

In baseball a batting average higher an .300 is considered excellent and an average of .400 is considered nearly impossible. This means to be excellent in baseball you only need to hit the ball about 1/3 of the time or about 33 times out of a 100! So if a player focused on all the times they missed (that .700+) they'd drive themselves nuts!

In a fight, you only have to be willing to go one punch further than the other guy to win. Maybe that wouldn't be the prettiest victory, but it still would be a win. And any fighter knows, not every technique works, so we have to be willing in the moment to let go and flow with what's happening. To get focused on a missed technique and get locked into a failure-mindset in a fight is to seal your fate.

Instead, you need to focus on what you want to achieve and work towards it. Notice your progress and use your "mistakes" as feedback. The key to success here is to keep at it until you get what you want.

All my very best to you,

Pete Kautz

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