Of Storm Clouds, Paranoia and Awareness

This afternoon, my spouse (“A.”) and I went for a long walk around our neighborhood. As usual for me, I was in a relaxed Condition Yellow state of alertness. At one point in our walk, I noticed a teenaged, or perhaps early 20’s, male standing along the wall which encircled a back yard. There are lots of kids in our area and seeing teens out and about isn’t unusual, but something about this one pinged my radar, so I stopped to watch him for a few moments and see if I could figure out what I’d alerted on.

By the way, this is a good exercise and one I highly recommend for those working to develop their situational awareness. As Gavin de Becker writes in The Gift of Fear, our intuition doesn’t always respond to the right triggers, and it doesn’t always respond in the right way to a trigger. But, he says, it always has our best interests at heart and, when our “spidey sense” gets triggered, our intuition is always responding to something. So, when I get that prickle, I always try to stop and figure out where it’s coming from.

[Read more…]

The Double-Edged Sword of Fear

I’ve been reading through some old posts on the excellent A Girl and Her Gun blog (if you aren’t following her, you should be), and I came across this one which talks about Colin Goddard, who survived the Virginia Tech shooting in 2007.

There’s lots of great info in the post, so I’ll let you (and strongly encourage you to) read it, but I wanted to pick up a thread of thought that really jumped out at me: Fear is a double-edged sword.

[Read more…]