Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Expand Your Situational Awareness With Drills

Situational awareness is not just for self-defense. Your whole world can be different as you start to notice and see everything around you. But for self-defense it’s imperative.
Before it can become part of your background thought process, or your subconscious mindset, you are going to have to be purposeful and do things to hone your skills.
• Play games with yourself; if you have kids include them in the process. When you enter a store, see how many exit points you can immediately identify. Look for obstacles, threats, or anything that could hinder your escape should something go down.
• Start watching people. Try to notice how people normally behave; what’s normal, what’s not? This is called a baseline. One of the best ways to spot trouble is to be able to read people’s behavioral quirks. You can avoid problems or threats because you pick up on things like body language, emotions, and changes in a person’s voice that can tell you something is about to happen.
• Limit outside distractions. When you are out in public you need to put down the phone, leave the electronic distractions at home, and really spend time being one with your environment.
• Start trusting your gut! At first you may be wrong, but in the end, you need to beware of those primal instincts that are built into your very being. The fight or flight response is a very real thing, something that can be used to your advantage if you can learn to control it and not give into the fear aspect which so many people in today’s society seem to be overwhelmed with.
Priority Awareness Zone
Imagine that you are the center of a 15-yard diameter circle. Look all around you—the entire 360 degrees—and evaluate each of the people within 7 or 8 yards of you. Start with those closest to you, and move out to your 8-yard radius. See anything unusual or noteworthy? Next, scan the same area, and see if you can pick out anything that could be used as a defensive tool—somewhere to hide, something that can be used as a shield or anything that can be used to strike. Finally, examine the same area and determine your best exit routes. For extra credit add the area above you, for a 540-degree awareness zone!
Head to Toe
Pick a person in your Priority Awareness Zone and describe that person in detail, paying particular attention to his or her most distinctive features—as if you might have to explain the person to the police. This helps you look more closely at people and process more information about them.
Here are some more tips.
Identify all the exits when you enter a building.
Count the number of people in a restaurant, subway or train car.
Note which cars take the same turns in traffic.
Take a look at the people around you and attempt to figure out their stories. Imagine what they do for a living, their mood, what they are focused on and what it appears they are preparing to do, based merely on observation.
Next time you’re in a parking lot, look for – and count – the number of cars with people sitting in them, whether you’re walking to the storefront, or coming back to your car, or even driving through.

Today find all the reflective surfaces that you can. See what those
reflections hold.
• Find the trees in the windows of your home.
• See the glint of the semi-truck in the window of a passing car.
• See the rippled reflection of the sky or yourself in a puddle of water.
• See the surroundings of the restaurant in the beverage glass before you.
• See the reflections of the road in the heat haze on the highway in front of you.
• See the distorted you in the corneas of the person you are speaking to.
• The only reflection to pay no attention to—that of any mirror.
• Find any and all reflections-and mark how many surfaces provide mirror images.

Awareness Drill

Take 3/Find 5

Select a 15-minute period in your day to execute this drill.

Take three steps, stop and list (verbally if possible) 5 distinct
things in your environment that you can physically sense, These can be
things you see, sounds you hear, scents, tastes on the wind, a breeze
on the skin.

Take three more steps, stop and repeat cataloging 5 more things. Do
not repeat anything in any of your prior inventory.

Continue until the ¼ hour is completed with no repetition of what you noticed.

If you take the time to honestly commit to this exercise you will find
there is far more to sense than we normally take in. We gloss over and
glide through so much of life that what we miss can be astounding.

There is a game known as “Kim’s Game” and it is played both by Boy Scouts and by military snipers to increase their ability to notice and remember details. It’s an easy game to execute: have someone place a bunch of different objects on a table (24 is a good number), study them for a minute, and then cover them with a cloth. Now write down as many of the objects as you can remember. You should be able to recall at least 16 or more.

These are real-world things you can do to help develop a situational awareness mindset.

Engaging in such simple situational-awareness drills will train a person’s mind to be aware of these things almost subconsciously when the person is in a relaxed state of awareness.
Warriors must be aware.
Aware of what? Everything.
A Warrior must be Awake. All detail is interesting, all detail may be
important. We do not know what detail will change our lives. We do not
know what detail will save our lives.

Semper Paratus
Check 6