Friday, March 30, 2018

Do What You Can

 
 
Man, my arm has been talking to me lately. I've had some issues w/it for a long time, which led to have to having to get surgery a few years ago...

It still gives me problems and although I get frustrated because it limits certain things and eliminates other things. Regardless, I know that it could be worse...

A LOT worse...

So, what do you do when you are not able to control your circumstance? Or the fact that you cannot always operate at 100%...

Well, like many things in life...

Do What You Can...

Yep, to keep going down your path, keeping a good mindset is IMPORTANT! Instead of doing what you want, you often have to "Do What You Can..."

What does this mean?

Well, in the case of my arm, I may WANT for it to be like it was, but it's NOT! 

I could bitch, complain, make excuses, be bitter, get angry, stop doing things altogether, etc...

Or I could...

"Do what I can and Keep Going..."

This is a much more sophisticated mindset than it appears. 

...AND you can use it in so many other area of Your Life... Petty much EVERY area of Your Life!
 
You may want our society to be different... more peaceful... a place where we don't need to lock our door, or take security measures for protection...

Yes, I agree, we SHOULD be able to live in such a society...

However... We Don't! 

So, I do what I can to both...

(1) Protect myself (and others) to the best of my abilities (and extent of the law).

(2) Keep working toward a nicer, safer, more respectful society through teaching and sharing this Protector Lifestyle, taking political action, serving on committees, involvement in the community, communicating to my leaders regarding how we not only want them, but need them to, ethically and courageously work as public servants to represent with the care necessary of their position... etc. 

If the laws and/or environment changes, I can change, either in support or opposition... 

Either way I'll keep working at it "doing what I can" in my own Life, as well as (at the same time of) exercising my ability to influence the society that I live in. 

No matter, I'm in Control of How I Respond to what happens to me, even if I can't change the external circumstance! 

 
Why Am I Bringing This Up?!

As I've been saying, I have been getting a fair amount of questions, comments and inquires regarding the Florida incident. 

Understand that I have good friends on BOTH SIDES of the Fence regarding how to approach this problem and I believe that BOTH want to find a way to protect life...

However, they have two very different ways of approaching the problem...

One side more conservative and 'Pro-Gun' believing that there are bad guys out there that we can't control, so we have to have the ability to protect ourselves (and others), which in their mind to be able to do that more effectively will require a firearm in the hands of law abiding citizens. 

The other more liberal side, wants to see at the very least stricter gun laws or elimination of firearms all together... Believing that societal rules should be in place to alter peoples behavior. Further that there is no reason we should have weapons capable of such destruction so easily accessible and available to the general public. 

I know I'm leaving out many details and complexities and over simplifying the issue, however, I really don't want to go too far down this path of discussing or arguing either point... 

Yes, I have my opinions on how things should be handled, but what I'm trying to get across w/this correspondence, with PeaceWalker.net isn't about that. 

That said, I think YOU should absolutely have an opinion on a solution and work toward exercising your right to voice your opinion and cast your vote as to influence legislation regarding whatever your beliefs are on the matter...

But this email, the PeaceWalker website, fb page, etc is NOT about an agenda of "PRO" or "ANTI" anything. 

PeaceWalker Resources and Community is about...

~ How We Are All More Similar than We Are Different...
~ Learning to protect the right things (especially during the stress of conflict)... 
~ How by developing a good Baseline we can be apart of a solution...
~ Increasing your verbal and physical skills as a protector...
~ How being a PeaceWalker & living a Protector Lifestyle can help you to have a more successful career and live a safer, more fulfilling Life!


Beyond Policy & Law How Are YOU 
Going to Live Your Life?!

The PeaceWalker Approach is more about YOU & what YOU can do when it comes to dealing with conflict and violence!


ACTIVE ASSAILANT RESPONSE MODULE:


I promised you that I would put together an Module addressing this very emotional topic...

I have already posted a brief video on PeaceWalker.net and I am in the process of getting more material ready for release, however, it's going to take a little time, so hang in there! It's on its way soon!! 

To hold you over, here are a few links to some blog posts that I recently put up on the subject:

Attack: Meeting the Problem Head On!


What Will Be In the Module?

The whole program will includes discussions, exercises and scenario training, awareness and prevention skills, strategies of possible responses before, during & after an event, working with law enforcement, and more...
.
The workshop a lot of the material was taken from was taught from a unique perspective from my experience from working with both U.S. and Israeli approaches, which can differ somewhat dramatically...
.
Also the material is presented in a way that is from an unarmed civilian perspective, not that coming from Law Enforcement, Military or an Organizational agenda (because each has a different perspective on how to approach the situation).


More later...
 
All the best,
~Craig

YOU May Be the Most Qualified Person



Well, it's been a week since coming back from the Islands... and it feels like I'm still coming up for air.

Getting caught up and getting back on track often takes longer than we want. However, step by step, bit by bit, you keep going and it comes together. So, keep taking one step after the other until you (re)build your momentum! (...and that is exactly what I'm doing!)

You know how I have been saying that "If you don't have anything, you don't have anything to give?"
Well, that can be applied in may ways. Here's a very literal application of that concept that happened to me while I was snorkeling out in the Bahamas...


The Paddle-Board Incident...

One of the days while sailing in the Bahamas we anchored off a small Island and headed to the beach for some sun and fun. One of the passengers Ted, decided to try his hand at paddle boarding.

The conditions were perfect for it, the ocean was smooth, there was only a slight breeze. So, Ted grabs the surf like board along with the accompanying paddle, swims out a hundred yards or so from shore and attempts too master the fine art of paddleboarding.

Meanwhile, I was swimming back from snorkeling near a large rock out crop several hundred meters from where Ted was. As I slowly swam toward shore, enjoying the warm, aquamarine Caribbean water, I casually watched as Ted fell several times off the paddleboard. As he did this he kept drifting further and further from the shore.

Then after several failed attempts to get up on the board, Ted notices that he is quite a distance from shore. He can't get back up on the board, and no matter how hard he swims, he keeps drifting out, away from shore. So, he yells to the people on the beach for someone to come and pull him in.

Ted is about two hundred or so meters from shore. Being that there aren't  waves or wind, sound traveled quite easily, so the people could actually hear him yell.

I was triangulated about seventy five meters or so between him and shore, when I hear him call out to the shore party. Being that I was much closer and a decently strong swimmer and in shape enough to help, I yell out, "I'm closer, I'll pull him in." 

So I swim out to him, grab the rope of the paddleboard, tell Ted to hold on to the board and I'll pull him in.

It took us a few minutes to make it back to the beach.

Ted and his wife thanked me for helping out in a situation that although wasn't quite an emergency (yet), could have turned into a much more serious situation.


You Can't Give What You Don't Have...

I could have all of the good intentions in the world, but if I wasn't in the right place, been in good enough shape, and have skill enough to swim, I couldn't have helped.

Even worse I could have OVERESTIMATED my condition and skills, went to try to help and ended up in trouble as well, now causing others to have to save two people rather than just one, putting EVERYONE in more jeopardy!


If You Can, Do...

Learning to step up if you have the ability to is even more challenging now-a-days than ever before... Why?

I think because we have become very compartmentalized in our society. So much so that we been taught into believing that you have to be some sort of certified or degreed 'expert' to do even the most basic things in life. Even things like standing up for or protect yourself or someone else.

"Who gave you the authority!? Who gave you permission?!"

We have developed a society that has become very safe and predictable. This is good... However not without its challenges.

One of these challenges is when things are not safe or predictable. When things need to happen now, before worse thing transpire.

Another hurdle of our current time and society is that we want 'perfect' outcomes, or else we blame someone or something because it didn't turn out exactly right.

Accountability...

But, when it comes to chaos, violence & emergencies there aren't always 'perfect' outcomes...

Sometimes we have to choose bad over worse...

Not because we want to, but because that is the only choice at the moment.

As they say, hindsight is 20/20 and it's easy to be the armchair quarterback. As a society we are very hard on people who achieve that 'perfect' ending in situations.

Most of the time we do have the luxury and time when something happens to call forth 'The Experts', do a research study and put together a committee, to move forward in the best possible manner, all the while not offending anyone and of course spinning it in such a way as to have positive media coverage (social and conventional).

...so we began teaching people to not help unless they are that said expert, on that said committee and if you do, there are dire consequences to face in the eyes of your peers.

We are taught to not be 'rule breakers', so we don't... and when we do it's for the wrong reasons, or it goes too far.

We are even more addicted to acceptance than ever before. We live in our little bubbles of like minded 'communities' (on line & otherwise) and when we are challenged we rant, rave or unfriend altogether to find another community where our ideals are mirrored.

Our skin has grown thin in the face of adversity...

We've lost our balance...

Rather than going on and fully embracing my own rant, I want to cut it short to circle back to what I wanted my point to be...


YOU May Be the Most Qualified Person...

When it comes to emergencies or time that need attention NOW. YOU may be the most qualified person there!

Just like Ted's paddleboard story I just told you. Although I wasn't a 'certified lifeguard', I was the most qualified person there able to help. So, instead of waiting for someone 'more qualified', I stepped up, took charge and did the best I could.

This is a similar discussion we had during our Active Assailant Response Training... Whether or not to choose to do something regarding an emergency.

With even minimal training, YOU may be the most qualified person there to help out if needed! 

That discussion is available to you on our NEW Active Assailant Response Training Module. Available now on PeaceWalker.net.

Click here to gain free 7 day trial access to our NEW Active Assailant Preparedness Module!

Are You Prepared to Step Up!?!

Sometimes we are in a situation that we don't want to be in. A situation where we are asked to help out, even though we don't feel qualified or ready. A situation where there is no one else around more qualified. A situation where seconds count. A situation where your presence can make a difference.

Remember, no matter where you go everyone is a little bit safer because you are there.


You got this,
~Craig 

Do We Need Guns to Protect?




 Police on scene at the recent school shooting in Maryland

While I was down here in Florida, I heard of yet another school shooting  This one happened a couple days ago in Maryland. Unlike the recent shooting in Florida where there were mass causalities, this one was contained, minimizing the loss of life and injured.

There was an armed resource officer who intervened and shot the 17 year old gunman before more people got hurt or killed.

Now, you may be thinking that I am going to use this example as a reason to tout a pro-gun "solution" to our current increase in this type of violence...

But I'm not going to...

Yes, this time the situation was dealt with before it got worse, however was it only because of the officer having a firearm?

No, I don't think it was...

What happens if when during one of these situations, an innocent bystander (student or teacher?) was to get shot by the person trying to protect? How 'forgiving' would those parents, that community, our country be then?

Is this a risk we as a society willing to take on!?

Is there a choice!?

Who will be the first parent to sign the waiver stating that you will not hold the school, security officer or other volunteer liable if their kid gets hurt or killed by someone trying to help but missed and accidentally shot their child?

Who will be the first teacher to, as part of their employment recognize that they may get hurt or killed in the same way or may accidentally hurt or kill someone when dealing with a chaotic situation like an active assailant.

Who will they or their loved ones look to blame?

I know these are not nice things to think about but, we need to consider our options and the responsibilities that come along with them.

Is there another way to address these situations?

Is it really ONLY about the weapon? Both regarding prevention and defensive response?

THESE Types of Situations Require...

That the ETHIC drives the Tactic which drives the Technique.

And the ethic we are talking about is Protecting Life...

So, when it comes to being a protector... the tool is still one of the last things on our list.

A friend of mine named Colby Taylor has a saying I like...

"I'm always armed, sometimes I have a weapon."

It is reminiscent to the USMC's slogan:

"One Mind Any Weapon."

So Are Guns the Solution Then?!?

I'm not saying that having (more) armed personnel are the solution any more than I am saying that banning guns is.

Are you wondering WHAT am I saying then?!

For the sake of this conversation I wanted to point out that the Weapon (in this case a firearm) can help in certain situations if the person with that weapon has the right ethic, intent, skill and courage to use it properly.

...Just like it can be incredibly destructive in the hands of people who have ill intent...

...Even people with good intent but lack of skill or lapse in courage can be ineffective or end up making a situation worse in many ways including unnecessarily taking a life.

The Situation is More Sophisticated Than 'Just' Having or Not Having Guns...

Yes, bringing guns into the equation ups the ante on many levels, and it is something we need to consider... but we need to do so responsibly.

And remember, it's not the only issue that we have to consider regarding both protecting life and what's behind the violence on an individual and social level.

Will limiting or banning firearms reduce this type of violence?!

Maybe...

Will arming teachers and/or having armed guards at schools, churches and other public facilities help reduce the frequency of these types of occurrences or the body count of an event?!

Possibly...

Either way we approach the situation.... 

Let's not continue to vilify and demonize each other. There are differing perspectives and ways of approaching this heated situation.

PEOPLE will have to solve this...

WE will have to solve this...

So, we need to address it as humans, remembering that guns are tools and we have to consider how (or whether) use them or not...

And for the record, I don't know if  'solve' is the right way of thinking about this necessarily...

'Just' adding more guns to the mix (like arming teachers, or having CPL holders volunteer for security at you church...), isn't going solve the problem in its entirety, any more than simply taking firearms away will.

There will always be violence, I think it is more about managing it while not trying incite it as much as humanly possible).

Whatever tool (i.e. gun) is used it can be used ethically, skillfully and courageously...

...Or it can be used unethically, unskillfully and cowardly.

So, as we are trying to figure this problem out as a society...

As you are fighting for your rights as a U.S. citizen...

As you are voicing your opinion to our leaders on how you believe we can solve (or at least help with) this issue...

...What will YOU do as an Individual?!

How will you decide to protect yourself and others if called to task during a time that will undoubtedly be the most critical situation in your life?

If You Want More Information On Active Shooter Preparedness...

Then check out our NEW Active Assailant Response Training Module. Available now on PeaceWalker.net.

Click here to gain free 7 day trial access to our NEW Active Assailant Preparedness Module! No Risk! You can cancel any time!

You got this,
~Craig 


School Lockdown... Up Close & Personal




Walker Police arriving on scene at West Michigan Academy of Environmental Science in Walker, MI
 It's one thing when you see something frightening and upsetting on your computer, it's another game altogether when it happens to you or someone close to you.

Once again, I was planning on giving this subject of Active Shooters a rest, but then at 3:40pm yesterday...

Then I got a text from one of the teachers who trains with me...


There's a LOCKDOWN at Our School...

...but don't worry, everyone is okay.

WTF?!?

I read it a couple times to make sure I read it right.

I hadn't heard about the news, so I immediately got my phone out to look.

Sure enough, there was an mlive article that explained what was going on:

http://www.mlive.com/news/grand-rapids/index.ssf/2018/03/email_threat_forces_walker_cha.html

I was relieved to hear that Rob and everyone at the West Michigan Academy of Environmental Science were safe and that it was an empty threat, but holy sh*t!! Really?!?

A mix of emotions came over ranging from shock, relief, anger and concern.

I know Rob pretty well, he's been training with me for 7 years or so,  he's a friend as well as on of our assistant instructors at our martial arts academy.

As a matter of fact, he did some MasterClasses for our PeaceWalker Teacher Module on PeaceWalker.net.

Here are Rob's well stated words about the situation:

School went on lock-down today after an email threat was made to our office. Students and staff showed strong colors and Walker Police made a swift, strong, and professional response.

Thank you all students, staff, families, and police officers for stepping-up when we needed it. WMAES - let's learn from this experience.

Let's train with greater clarity and sense of purpose, let's keep each other safe and secure, and let's reach-out to those who need help to make sure they know they are not alone.

Let's remember that days like this are terrible - but also that things could be much worse and that we should not live in fear.

Proud of my kids, colleagues, and Walker's professional protectors today. Well done - you could not have handled it any better!

To whoever made the threat to our school: Please realize that you could have used your influence today to protect and inspire people. Instead, you chose to try to scare them.

Each of us has a tremendous ability to affect others...

The energy you used to intimidate others today could have made a much bigger impact protecting and empowering them.

You can make a positive difference and keep others safe from the wolves of the world. Do not risk your humanity by becoming one.


To be honest, I'm disappointed and furious about what you chose to do today, but please understand that I do not believe your life is worth any less today than it was yesterday. Your life is worth just as much as my life and the lives of all my kids, friends, and family members...

However, your actions will have consequences and you will not like the outcome when they are dealt with one way or another...

This is advice, not a threat.

Step up and lead.

Life isn't easy for any of us - choose to lead by example; to be the bigger person and make life a little better for somebody else - not worse.

Final Thoughts...

I could go on about Rob's training or the importance for folks to be prepared, but I won't... You already know my feelings on that. Not to mention it would be hard to top what Rob had to say in the paragraphs above...

So, I will end with this:

I'm glad that Rob and everyone at West Michigan Academy of Environmental Science is alright and that it was an empty threat.

I also hope that the kid who made the threat is found (it sounds like the police are 'hot on his trail') and gets the help (and punishment) they need to get healthy and focus their energy in a positive way... before they (and others) have to face the consequences of their actions...

Finally, I am thankful that Rob was there to Protect and provide clarity and strength to his students and everyone around him in the time of need.

Glad to know you Rob... Love you like a brother!

Keep going,
~Craig 

Friday, February 23, 2018

What We Can Learn From Olympic Athletes






It Takes a Tribe...


Thinking about the Olympics reminds me of training. 

How many hours have those athletes trained to compete in that One Event? 

How many other activities support the One that they are competing in?

How many other people do they have on their support staff to help them dial in their One Thing?

~ Sport coaches for their main activity.
~ Nutritionists for diet and supplements.
~ Doctors for injury recovery.
~ Strength trainers.
~ Flexibility coaches (yoga, pilates, etc.)
~ Psychologists 
~ Tutors (for those still in school)
~ Massage therapists
~ Chiropractors
~ Managers
~ Sponsors
~ Backers
~ etc.


Whose On YOUR TEAM?!

Just like that Olympic Athlete isn't going to their competition alone, YOU SHOULDN'T BE EITHER!!


Get Your Dream Team Together!

Whoever you are, whatever you do, you should put together your 'Dream Team,' 'MasterMind Group' or 'Support Structure.'

...Whatever you want to call it... 

Basically this is about assembling a group of people and activities that help you to create more success in your Life and Career. 

No person is an island and everyone's 'One Thing' is made up of a bunch of smaller things. If you get better at the smaller things, your One Thing will also improve! 

What team do you need to be successful in YOUR Life?

Take a minute right now to grab a piece of paper and write down a list of people and activities that will make you more successful in your career!

If you're in business, some of your Success Team Members might be:

~ Someone (or a group of someones) you know and respect who owns their own company you can shoot the breeze with about business and living the life of a business owner...
~ Business Coach or Mentor
~ Marketing Coach
~ Accountant
~ Bookkeeper
~ Lawyer
~ Banker
~ IT Professional
~ Networking (that person or people you know who's really connected)
~ Ad Agency or Person
~ HR Professional
~ Counselor
~ Insurance Agent
~ Speech Coach (if you publicly speak)
~ Life Coach
~ Personal Trainer (regarding YOU and your employees)

...What else might YOU suggest??


If you're a cop it might look something like this:

~ A Fellow and/or Senior Officer that you respect and can go grab a beer with who can give you some insights on things that you struggle with!
~ Lawyer
~ Counselor
~ MSW
~ Medical Professional: EMT, Trauma Nurse, etc.
~ Someone in corrections
~ Probation / Parole Officer
~ Shooting instructor
~ Sales guy/gal (why?! Because you're always persuading someone into something and having someone who makes a living by persuading people can be beneficial)
~ Personal Trainer (strength, conditioning)
~ Yoga instructor (flexibility, mindfulness, relaxation)
~ Martial Arts / Defensive Tactics Instructor (One that's appropriate for you and your profession)
~ Nutritionist 
~ Massage Therapist 
~ Chiropractor 
~ Medical Doctor
~ Driving (Tricks to defensive / offensive driving!)
~ Communication Coach

...What else might YOU suggest??


In each of the above professions I listed a bunch of people and things that have to do with each profession as well as the individual. 

Break down what you do into components and find people and activities that will help motivate and support your success in each of those things...

Click the link below and share your own "Success Team" List on our fb group:



How Does This Relate to PeaceWalker?!

Great question...

No matter who you are, or what you do...

~ Customer Service Representitve
~ Teacher
~ Police Officer
~ Factory Worker
~ Counselor
~ Engineer
~ Sales Person
~ Mechanic
~ Minister, Pastor or Priest
~ Manager
~ Correctional Officer
~ Business Owner
~ Nurse
~ Doctor
~ Construction Worker
~ Contractor
~ Parent... (Especially you parents!)
~ Etc Etc
~ You Name It! 


ONE THING is Consistent...

We all have to deal with people! And with people comes CONFLICT. 
.
...But, also opportunities, but only if you know how to deal with things well!


Your Biggest Challenge...

Who do you have in your corner when it comes to dealing with your 
#1 Challenge You Face Every Day?!
.
...I'm talking about How to Deal w/People!!
.

...We Can Be a Part of your Success Team! 


If you're looking to train to better deal with the Spectrum of Human Conflict, then consider joining us on www.peacewalker.net, where you can join a community of people who are training to be More Vulnerable by Better Managing the Risks to Become Better Protectors in their Life and Career!



Keep Going,
~Craig