I know just enough about the Boy Scouts of America to be dangerous. I was the Cub Scout Master for one of the oldest packs in the area when my son was growing up and took the journey with him all the way to Eagle Scout. The foundation of the BSA is to always be prepared.
Funny, but that's the same foundation I have found in my martial arts. When I began my martial arts journey twelve years ago, I soon realized there were many similarities between the two. The lessons I learned in my training carried over into other areas and I soon found those skills perfected on the mats could be applied in all aspects of my life.
Today, I came the closest I've ever been in the past twelve years in having to potentially use my training to defend myself. And it was the most scared I've been in a long time. But I learned many things about myself today...
1. Being scared doesn't mean I stop thinking. The instant I felt threatened, I was thinking about how to put distance between myself and my opponent as well as making sure I didn't keep my back turned to him. If I was going to be called upon to defend myself, I wanted to be fully prepared.
2. Being in control of oneself sometimes can control the situation itself. Once I realized this other person was losing control of their emotions and was quickly escalating to cursing me, I remained silent and presented a non-threatening demeanor. Not only did it give the other person a moment to collect themselves, it gave me a chance to think of some options should things turn ugly.
3. Being the last one standing may sometimes be the ultimate goal. Fortunately today I was not called upon to put my training into practice. But I do know I had come to the quick conclusion that should this other person put their hands on me in any threatening manner, I was going to react quickly and try to "persuade" him to leave me alone. It's the choices we make in the heat of the moment that define our core character. I can only hope that I will always make decisions I will never come to regret.
And you know the funny thing? I have found that writing carries with it the same foundation I discovered while working with the Boy Scouts of America and which I have found with my martial arts. It's all about learning the skills to carry yourself to the next level with pride. To make the right choices which lead to no regrets and most always leads to life's most successful accomplishments. And what can be sweeter than that?