What is Self-Defense?

Excerpt from The Psychology of Self-Defense by Chris Sutton

The real definition of self-defense is: the ability to avoid conflict and/or to adequately defend yourself in a conflict. You must be able to do this under extreme stress and fear. In a real-life situation there are no rules, no refs, no controlled environments, and, most likely, no help. Your attacker will always pick the time, place, and method of attack; you will never get this luxury. No matter what the outcome, you won’t receive a trophy, title belt, or medal of valor.

What does it take to spark a real-life attack or conflict? As little as a look – sometimes even less. Usually, your attacker won’t know you. He won’t care how much money you have, how important you are, how much you love your family, or about anything else in your world. You will be nothing but an opportunity for him. That’s why the first part of the definition of self-defense – the ability to avoid conflict – is so important.

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