Self-Defense: 10 things to avoid in a quarrel

Having a plan means to be ready to act

As we have stated (read Self defense: how to behave), to deal with the first level of self-defense situations (the ones that do not involve the use of violence) it is important to prepare ourselves mentally.

Note – This article has been asked by one of our Core Course practitioners on Patreon (see how to attend our home study classes here Learn Kung Fu online: a beginner-to-expert course).

Knowing in advance how to react in the right way, will give us great help in controlling the inevitable emotional stress of the moment.

A note by Master Kongling – This does not mean to mechanically apply a particular reaction B in relation to a specific situation A: it does not work this way. We need to study a general strategy made of various possible tactics to be adapted to the present scenario. This is self-defense.

10 of the worst errors in a not-yet violent self-defense scenario

In a dispute situation, that has just begun, we must learn to immediately block the escalation that could outcome in physical violence, so here are 10 things we should at all costs avoid:

  1. Shorten the distances – Go face to face, with open shoulders, chin up (etc.); this way we uselessly bring the fight right away on a physical plan where it will be speed, reflexes or luck to decide our fate
  2. Touch, indicate or worse shove / hit our interlocutor – It could mean to start a clash that we do not know how it will end (also from the legal point of view, read Best martial arts for self-defense)
  3. Insult, raise the voice, provoke, mock, humiliate, cause damage to property or persons – Do similar things means breaking an already precarious balance and give our “adversary” a justification to attack
  4. Show that he / she has psychologically hurt us (with insults, threats, etc.) – Who we face should not expect to have chances to prevail over us, neither physically nor verbally; we should not react but even not succumb (read Become the absolute zero)
  5. Verbally threat to be armed, to be skilled fighters, dangerous people (etc.) – If it is not true, it simply does not work, it claims a confrontation and makes it clear that we are afraid; who can fight and is truly willing to, does not reveals it (read Self-defense: aggression in front of a supermarket); lying is an art, if we do not master it, it cannot be improvised (especially in moments of such high stress)
  6. Give imperatives orders – An aggressor that is angry with us will never do what we directly say, even if he has doubts about being able to prevail (it is interesting to mention that this mechanism can play in our favor but we need to know how, read Personal defense and psychological tricks)
  7. Move quickly, shake our arms with big movements (or worse at eye level) showing nervousness and / or talking faster – For an angry mind everything that moves fast, violently and near him / her becomes automatically a threat
  8. Look intensely into the interlocutor’s eyes for more than a few seconds – The look is for many like a finger pointing, an angry look like a sword pointed, in other words, an unbearable threat; we can do it only if we are in a dominant moment (read for example Self-defense: aggression in front of a supermarket)
  9. Be taken by anger, fear, panic or excessive confidence – Let’s study the methods described in /// Subscribe (it's free!) or Login to see this content /// and let’s use them (along with martial practice) to increase our awareness
  10. Waste time thinking about things like “why is it happening to me?”, “What do I do now? I am not ready!”, “Why here?”, “Why now?” (etc.) – It is useless, probably we were not careful enough (read Personal defense: the S.A.F.E. method) but in the moment of the danger it is not relevant, the problem is now and here; we must aim to be lucid to dialogue and determined to (eventually) fight with all our resources

Final notes

Let’s imagine the “patience” of our potential aggressor as a wooden pallet already charged near his limit:

  • Each of the mistakes we have listed is a block of granite that could break (widely or for a few grams) his line of tolerance
  • If we want to prevail (in the meaning of preserving our physical integrity), we must instead learn to slowly unload that pallet

In the next article of this series, we will see what is right to do when we address a self-defense situation (read Self defense: 10 correct attitudes during a quarrel).

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Reply in the comments and share your experience:

  • Do you feel able to recognize and correct the wrong behaviors we have listed?

Author: Master Kongling

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