One of the big puzzles in self-defense training is the big gap between how we will imagine we will act when the shit hits the fan and our actual performance. A lot has been written on it, a lot of good research and even good speculation. In our fantasies we are cool-headed and courageous, efficient and dangerous. All too often, in the reality, our hands sweat and our knees start to shake and our brains just won't work, not the way we think they should.
Here's a thought from left field:
What if cowardice is a habit?
What if the big mystery is not the gap between fantasy and reality? What if the big mystery is why we expect bravery when we practice a thousand tiny acts of cowardice every week?
Do you know what I mean? All the people that you love but have never said the words to. All the things that you want to try "some day." The big chance that you didn't take because even though you hated it, you were secure where you were. All of the things that you have done in the name of safety, security and comfort no matter how bored or dead it made you feel. The times when you thought "someone should do something" but decided that the someone wasn't you. It wasn't your job, wasn't your problem...and you lay awake that night thinking of what you wished you had done.
Little white lies- my father used to tell me, "Every lie is an act of cowardice. You never lie unless you are afraid of the person you are lying to." You can rationalize your way around it, but it is dead true. All of your little white lies are a fear of how the person you are lying to might react.
Maybe the mystery is as simple as that. Do the right thing. Live hard. Take chances, and take the consequences that go with them. Dare. Don't sit in comfort wishing for adventure. Maybe just the habit of doing the right thing even when it is scary will translate to self defense. And even if it doesn't, you will have done some fine livin'.
Live hard. Live true.
I wanted to add a quick edit:
Have the courage to listen to intelligent people you disagree with. Don't take the easy path of listening to what people on your said claim that the other side says. Find an intelligent person who disagrees with you on an issue you feel strongly about and listen. Just listen. You are strong enough for that.
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