Updated: Oct 22, 2020
There is a great deal of education centered around self-defense training about skillsets however without the right Mindset you may not have an opportunity to use your resources and assets.
Mindset is the single most important element of self-preservation.
How Important is Self Defense Mindset
Across the fragmented self-defense industry, unilaterally instructors find mindset the number 1 element to survive violence.
Mindset is the foundation we build all of our skills on. You can possess the best techniques and be armed to the teeth, but without the correct mindset, they may be useless.
History is littered with the conflicts between more technologically advanced armies losing to barbaric hordes because of the disparity of mindset.
It will soon be found that the principal value of the training lies not so much in the actual physical holds or breaks, but in the psychological reaction which engenders and fosters the necessary attitude of mind which refuses to admit defeat and is determined to achieve victory. W.E. Fairbairn, All-in Fighting
Proper intent is more important than proper technique. Your belief in what you are doing and why you doing it is more important than how you are going to get it done.
We spend so much time training and tooling up. Some of that time must be dedicated to calibrating our mindset.
What is a Proper Self Defense Mindset?
A proper self-defense mindset is best described by the thoughts that are centered around the emotions that are flowing during a violent encounter.
The definition of mindset is the establishment of a set of attitudes held by someone. In the context, we are using it also includes the readiness to take action and win at any cost.
Joe Saunder does a nice job describing as:
The indignant rage that fills you when you realize that someone is trying to hurt you.
This is the fury that engulfs a mother when she finds someone attempting to harm her child.
The outright refusal to be a victim that empowers an 80lb high school girl to kick a 200lb male off her.
It is the terror and animalistic ferocity that lets a 6-year-old bite the face of a kidnapper and run for help.
Without the proper mindset, all of our elements will be missing a necessary ingredient. The proper mindset will be the fuel for your engine that drives your motivation.
You must train yourself to allow you to tap into your killer instinct. You need push-button access to a controlled explosion of rage so you can use neutralize the threat.
If you attempted to escape, evade, de-escalating, and you have no more choices. You must have complete commitment and intention on your part.
In self-defense of violent encounters, half measures do not give you half, they give you nothing.
How Big Is Your Why?
To put up the fight of your life you need to believe that you are of value. Some individuals have no problem with this concept.
For others, ask them to hurt someone else is unnatural. They would rather allow themselves to be hurt than hurt their attacker.
Even when they are being attacked by a violent predator. For them, simply defending themselves is not enough.
They can bear the idea of hurting someone. Perhaps they see this as a sense of sacrifice without seeing the complete picture.
Why should you attack the person that is attacking you? Finding a big enough why will enable you to do things you never thought you could or would.
I am important to your loved ones!
I am worth protecting!
There are people that depend on me!
I am too important to lose. Too many people depend on me!
This may be the hardest step for some. Too many people give it lip service. You must believe it in your gut. You must have no reservations so you can intellectualize what you need to do next. Here is some prominent figures' view on self-defense.
"The principle of self-defense, even involving weapons and bloodshed, has never been condemned, even by Gandhi." - Martin Luther King, Jr.
"The right of self-defense never ceases. It is among the most sacred, and alike necessary to nations and to individuals." - James Monroe
"Self-defense is not only our right; it is our duty." - Ronald Reagan
"For every idealistic peacemaker willing to renounce his self-defense in favour of a weapons-free world, there is at least one warmaker anxious to exploit the other’s good intentions." - Margaret Thatcher
"There’s only one basic principle of self-defense. You must apply the most effective weapon, as soon as possible, to the most vulnerable target.” - Bruce Lee
Develop Emotional Control
The above quote has an important dual meaning. Control is defined as a means or power to influence or direct behavior or the course of events.
Loss of emotional control can lead to overreacted or underreacting and both have harsh consequences.
You must remain objective and not let people anger you. If someone can anger you they control you and draw you into situations of their choosing.
Worse, in your day to day life, you will suffer if you have an emotional reaction to everything that is said to you.
True power is sitting back and observing things with magic. True power is restraint. If words control you that means everyone else can control you.
The overlooked meaning is the ability to direct or emotions. In the context, we are discussing is the ability to unleash the bad wolf at a particular moment and reign it back in when needed.
Angela Lee Duckworth Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania groundbreaking research on the discovery of her theory of "grit" as a predictor of success.
An element of GRIT is the ability to psychology manage fear. Gritty people manage fear and manage it as part of a process. They recognize that the vulnerability of determination is imperative for victory. No matter you survive.
We need to anticipate unrestrained brutality without remorse Ed Calderon
A technique to manage fear used by people in the underworld, one they themselves do not know their practicing, is desensitization through exposure. Being around violence develops the thick skin to manage fear.
Exposure can range from spending time with hoodrats all the way to exposure to violence and brutality in online videos. Both will bring various degrees of fear resilience. More discussion on fear is available on this link
The research is fascinating behind how some people successfully endure absolute Hell on Earth while other people fight back and win. Even when there is an overwhelming disparity of strength and size.
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