When I turned sixteen my father stood in front of me holding something in his hand that he hid behind his back. He told me I had two choices. Within seconds, my hungry imagination thought he would present me with two sets of keys. Hmmm... should I pick the classic Mustang or the new car?
All hope for a car drained and reality hit when from behind his back he brought forth and handed me a flyer – yep, no keys – it was a flimsy flyer that read: Self-Defense Seminar.
I felt a tinge of embarrassment for succumbing to improbable 16th birthday expectations and I took the piece of paper that had a picture of a strong lady throwing a side kick.
My two choices:
#1 Attend the self-defense seminar OR
#2 Cut my long hair, wear a baseball hat, and dress like a boy forever…..
You’d think number one was a no brainer, but I was shy and quiet. It was far past my comfort zone and I seriously considered option two. Anything sounded better than using my body to kick and strike and the thought of using my voice to yell simply left me weak in the knees.
Sometimes it’s difficult to step outside our cushioned comfort zone due to fears, insecurities, or our current reality – and I was no exception. With the help of my mom and sister dragging me there, I attended. And – crazy - but I actually had fun!
Over the years, I’ve had other women and teens express similar reactions when I share about my Action Awareness Training. There are those that jump at the idea to let loose and harness their power. And there are those that question why.
Once a lady told me she didn’t do anything in her life that would provoke the need for self-defense. It ends up her favorite hobby was walking solo on the nature trails. It just so happened that three weeks prior to our conversation, a man stabbed a woman on the very trail she walked most often.
Learning self-defense is like CPR – hopefully you never need it, but if you do you will have the valuable tools to protect yourself and the life of your loved ones.
The crime-statistics indicate that in the next hour, somewhere in the United States, the following will happen:
· 850 Thefts
· 190 Violent crimes
· 125 Assaults
· 66 Robberies
· 24 Sexual Assaults
· 12 Rapes
· 2 Murders
The statistics alone show good reason for self-defense training, but even physical training only goes so far unless you truly believe you're worth defending.
It’s about valuing yourself and taking responsibility for your life.
It’s about owning the confidence and projecting “I’m not a victim” loud and clear, simply through your demeanor, how you carry yourself, through your attitude and mood, and how you project yourself to the world.
It’s true - crime is everywhere, but you don’t need to focus on daunting statistics –that only breeds fear.
By practicing self-defense you turn fear into awareness, knowledge, and skill. This is real power.
Awareness is prevention – and prevention is always the number one defense.