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Ten Commandments Of Street Survival

A Girl and Her Gun: Ten Commandments Of Street Survival

Monday, July 2, 2012

Ten Commandments Of Street Survival

This weekend I got my daily email update from Active Response Training and in it was a link to Tony Blauer's Ten Commandments of Street Survival.  If you have been around the gun/self defense world a while you likely have seen it, if you are relatively new maybe not.  Either way it's worth a look.

You will be shocked, shocked, shocked to learn, I have a lot to say on this article, but because I am a merciful kind of gal, I will not share my every thought.

His first commandment is Thou Shall Not Not Train. He says this about training...
Upon reflection you realized that you lost this fight for several reasons:
  1. Your actual understanding of the theories of “intuitive radar”, “attacker profiles”, “sucker punch psychology” and “fear management” were limited.
  2. Actually, you never did “sucker punch” drills.
  3. You had never done “threshold and pain tolerance training” or
  4. Worked on “ballistic ground fighting” and
  5. You never analyzed natural stances.
I think I have made it pretty clear how I feel about training.  All kinds of training to include "sucker punch" and "threshold and pain tolerance" drills, so we will just move past that one except, quickly to the folks that might be new here, I am a fan of that kind of training.  I find it very valuable.

The second point, Thou Shall Not Defeat Thyself says this...

The mental side of combat is so vast and powerful that it quite literally determines your next move.  Dan Millman wrote, “When faced with just one opponent and you oppose yourself… you’re outnumbered.” Powerful words.  Your mind can be your ally or your most formidable opponent.  Your thoughts can motivate you or they can create the inertia State of psycho-physical paralysis.
Psychological fear leads to doubt and hesitation.  Unchecked it can devolve into anxiety and panic.  Unsolicited, a ‘Victim’s vocabulary’ starts: What if I lose?  What if it hurts?  What if I fail?  Thoughts like these must be eliminated from your vocabulary for you to perform at your peak.  Your ‘self talk’ or ‘internal dialogue’ must be positive, assertive and motivating.  Your inner coach must empower you to greater heights, to surpass preconceived limitations, to boldly go where… you get the picture.  That is what it means to not defeat yourself.

This has become a huge new way of thinking for me.  I had never seen this article before Saturday, but he is not the only one to espouse this mindset training and the importance of it.  I have heard it again and again and I have incorporated it into the fabric of my being.  Of course, it's why some people think I am getting a little cocky.  

"What if I lose" is not a part of my thinking, ever.  I will look at different scenarios and play them out in my head or in discussions with others and try to think of ways I am not yet as prepared as I would like to be.  That helps me know where I can focus more, but me losing, that never crosses my mind.  Some people might hear that and think I am delusional or I am not looking at things realistically or that I come across too confident, not so.  That thinking is what will save my life, at least partly.  Just like training with my gun or knives, it is paramount that I train my mind.  I must believe to my core that I can overcome and the only way to do that is to eliminate any and all self doubt.  That takes practice folks.  It takes conscious effort to stop thinking like a victim.

Commandment III is very closely related to number II, worth the read, but I will skip to IV.

Commandment IV has become my mantra.

Thou Shall Not Fear Fear...

Cus D’Amato, a famous boxing coach, said, “The difference between the hero and the coward is what they do with their fear.”  The next time you feel it – fight it.  Challenge your fear.  Attack your fear.  Do not fear fear. 

I do not let myself be afraid of anything and the more afraid of something I am, the more I force myself to do it.  I think a great paradox of surviving is that in order to survive I can't be afraid to not to.  If I am so focused on not surviving or on not getting hurt, I am too afraid to do what I need to do. The more I resolve myself to fight and not be afraid, the better chance I have to survive.  In facing things I am afraid of  I learn how to be calm in the face of adversity, how to overcome, how to survive.  Most attacks happen fast and there isn't a whole lot of time for thinking things through(that is where the other types of practice come in), but there are times when a clear head to think is going to come in handy. In my case, had I had a clear head, had I not been so afraid and so resolved not to fight, I am positive I could have avoided the entire attack. It was the bad guys fault, 100%, I hold no blame, but since bad guys are bad and there are no signs of them letting up, it is most beneficial to learn how to deal with them. Had I had the mindset I have now, he never would have got my money, he never would have me to the ground, he would not have become a permanent part of my life story. Fear did not serve me well that day, but it taught me a very valuable lesson. Fear is not helpful beyond the point of alerting us to a danger. 

I practice conquering fear everyday.  It doesn't matter if the fear is small like making phone calls or something bigger like getting hit. As ridiculous as it sounds picking up the phone to make those calls has helped me deal with my more ominous fears. We all have "little" fear we struggle with.  Things we know can't harm us and yet we can't bring ourselves to do them.  I have found each "little" fear I face helps me gain experience and confidence to face the bigger fears. The reverse is true as well.  The more big fears I face the easier it is to deal with the little ones.  Making a phone call isn't all that hard after you have broken your ribs fighting a male Marine/MMA fighter. Life works in tandem like that.

Training my mind and controlling my fears is paramount to my survival.  Not just in a life or death situation, but in simply living a more peaceful content life. For me it is important that I step up and force myself to deal with the things that scare me until I am no longer ruled by them.

I am heading back to train with Arete this week...I am not afraid.  I am not afraid.  I am not afraid:)

***For my more concerned readers, I am not really afraid to go back to training. Even though I am anxious to jump right back in, Arete is not gonna let me.

A- So this next week.  No rolling around for a wee bit longer.  Just some drills okay?

Me- Yeah, yeah, yeah...

A- Don't give me hell. Your still healing jackbutt.


At July 2, 2012 at 8:36 AM , Blogger Old NFO said...

The BIGGEST issue is how you handle the 'fight or flight' adrenal dump. If you can make that work FOR you, it gives you a leg up on the fight; but remember you will be down to gross motor skills at that point!

At July 2, 2012 at 8:49 AM , Blogger RabidAlien said...

Read somewhere (and its been mentioned in various John Wayne movies, as well) that the difference between a coward and a hero is not the lack of fear. Its the direction one runs when the fear hits.

Oh, and for the record, I'm totally stealing the descriptive "jackbutt". Its going on my list of gems, right up there with "turdburger" (stolen happily from Badass Of The Week).

At July 2, 2012 at 9:38 AM , Blogger agirlandhergun said...

Very important points!

At July 2, 2012 at 9:39 AM , Blogger agirlandhergun said...

Lol, yeah I am not entirely sure what a jackbutt is, but I am choosing to believe it was a term of endearment.

At July 2, 2012 at 12:51 PM , Blogger Broken Andy said...

And of course there is nothing wrong with drills and working on the fundamentals. Its all good.

At July 2, 2012 at 1:40 PM , Blogger agirlandhergun said...

Not only isn't there anything wrong with drills and working on the fundamentals, it is muey importante.

At July 2, 2012 at 8:25 PM , Blogger Rob-bear said...

Revised Rule Number One: Thou Shalt Move to a Nicer Neighbourhood. We've got lots of really nice places here in Canada, which I'm sure you would love. And you won't have to bring your gun with you.

Happy 4th of July.

At July 3, 2012 at 2:41 AM , Blogger MSgt B said...

“threshold and pain tolerance training”

He He

You're making this way too easy...

At July 3, 2012 at 2:55 AM , Blogger agirlandhergun said...

Bring it.

At July 3, 2012 at 2:58 AM , Blogger agirlandhergun said...

Rob, I live in a "nice" neighborhood and I was mugged in one, but regardless I have no desire to go anywhere without my guns. Even if safety were not a concern, I want my guns with me, they are fun.

Happy 4th of July to you too.

At July 3, 2012 at 3:48 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

JackButt- is a near and dear term of endearment when the person has surpassed even calling profane names or when they forget that mending bones even when they feel good are not 100%. Yes we will train yes we will work drills that test the physical and mental bounds, but I do not try to test the limits of broken or mending bones because then you are out of the fight much longer than a few weeks. So RabidAlien please feel free to take JackButt and use it as you will. AGirl remember Crawl Walk Run!

Brotherhood thru Pain.

At July 3, 2012 at 4:07 AM , Blogger agirlandhergun said...


Just for the record peeps, I have not done a single thing to prolong this injury to include asking about training. I waited until Mr. Arete asked me if I was ready.

He thinks he is funny:).

At July 3, 2012 at 7:38 AM , Blogger ProudHillbilly said...

Hoping that if s!*t goes down that my reaction will be "OH HELL NO!" and my training will have been enough at that point that I can make it a "NO!"

At July 3, 2012 at 11:57 AM , Blogger Rob-bear said...

OH, well. I tried. Or I'm very trying. Or something.

I'm always fascinated with Americans' love affairs with their guns.

At July 4, 2012 at 5:10 AM , Blogger agirlandhergun said...

I love my guns for their sheer joy, but my love affair is really with protecting myself, my loved ones, with not depending on others to take care of me, of defending my country against know all those silly America values:)

Thanks for dropping by and commenting. Very cool to have you here.

At July 4, 2012 at 5:10 AM , Blogger agirlandhergun said...

Me too!

At July 5, 2012 at 11:42 AM , Blogger Borepatch said...

I read this and wondered how on earth you are not a daily read.

Fixed now.

At July 6, 2012 at 7:33 AM , Blogger agirlandhergun said...

Thank you. You have been a daily read for me, for a long time.


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