Today’s class was a small class: 4 people, three who train regularly and what I call a tourist.

A tourist is someone who doesn’t take training seriously, makes excuses, shows up late or only when he has time to kill…and sadly, too many people in life are like this.

This behavior and its results was clearly showing today in the class dynamics: while the three regulars were going at it intensely and putting their all both in training and towards each other, the tourist was reluctant and hesitant and felt sorry for himself. Because of this, other students were more less able to push his limits – And he, in turn, could not push theirs therefore he decreased the quality of their training.

He strangely reminded me of one of the three other students whom, at the beginning, was very much the same way but has been attending regularly… over time, his resistance increased, fear and hesitation were pushed back and he now challenges his partners and himself much more and therefore increases the quality of training of all that train with him.

Outside of the comfort zone is where growth and improvement occur…not just in Systema but in life in general.

Don’t feel sorry for yourself. Don’t feel sorry for your partners. I won’t feel sorry for you and most important of all, life won’t feel sorry for you.

If you only show up late or when it’s convenient, if you only show up when you have nothing else to do, if you find excuses too easily, don’t waste your time, your partner’s time or mine.

I have put a lot of time money and energy in my training, I am here because I challenged myself and I expect to be challenged both by you and by life in general because, as mentioned, that is where growth emerges.

When you act like a tourist, you disrespect the training of your partners, of yourself and most importantly of mine.

In training, as in life, the choice is yours: make progress, or make excuses…

Wolf or sheep: it’s your call but you can’t have it both ways.

Don’t like what I’m saying? I’ve ruffled your feathers?

I’m not sorry for you.