How to be mentally prepared for self-defense
A good point to start is to train with:
- Emotional control training – Through the use / control / channeling of emotions and sensations (eg. rationalization of danger, use of anger as the last resource before succumbing, reflecting our fear on the adversary, etc., read How to use emotions in workout and combat)
- Realistic simulations – Through sparring and realistic (conceptual and practical) simulations of the most effective strategies / tactics to be adopted / adapted; we need to test ourselves in not-guided / linear situations, from the simpler to the extreme ones (struggle, escape, gain of an advantage, deceit, ambush, etc.)
- Daily meditation – If we manage to control our mind enough to free it from all thoughts and relax it (read Meditation method 1, it is never too late to start), we can also “easily” impose immediate concentration on the idea of fighting (read Become the absolute zero)
- Mental conditioning – From the conscious suggestion to the mental anchors (read Fighting and mind control: the anchors) and the most advanced / effective self-control techniques
- Daily training – Through the awareness forged in hard, serious, focused and constant daily workout (which gives confidence in ourselves, hampers the idea of suffering, resisting, accepting pain, and putting aside fatigue, read How to start practicing 6DKF)
The mind must be trained like the body
It is very easy to read thousands of articles sitting on our chair but there is one thing that must be stressed: none of the practices that we have listed works at the level of simple knowledge / poor practice.
We must focus on the idea that we need to:
- Try and experiment – In a real personal defense situation, nothing will be as we expect; we must be focused on what is not working and not be excited by what we can do
- Gain experience making mistakes – Accepting failings and learn from them is the first step of knowledge (read Measure ourselves with errors)
- Assimilate, mechanize and adapt – What we learn is not created for us, it’s our job to make it our second nature
No tricks, no shortcuts
To truly change our mind assets we must understand that:
- Without practice, the theory is useless. Without full understanding, practice is vacuous.
- In martial arts (and in life) everything that is really worth to be learned is out of the idea of “trick / shortcut”
- The tricks exist and we will study them (because they must be known and because they are often effective) but they are and remain limited
- Tricks can be prevented / avoided, true aptitudes and skills are always at our service
In the next article of this series, we will see how to be constantly ready to fight from a physical point of view (read Always be ready to fight: the body).
- 10 things that change for 6DKF’s practitioners (physical) – What does it means to truly practice 6 Dragons Kung Fu (physically)
- 12 Things That change for 6DKF’s practitioners (mental) – What does it means to truly practice 6 Dragons Kung Fu (mentally)
Reply in the comments and share your experience:
- Mentally, what is the difference between a real street fight and a sparring session in your opinion?
Author: Master Kongling
Founder of 6 Dragons Kung Fu.