*Thanks to CKM for this post.
The weekend has finally come and you can’t wait to enjoy your day off and just kick back at home. You’ve waited for this all week, you’ve been working hard and you feel you deserve a break. You wake up that morning happy as can be, you’ve made your plans and your mind is set on how the day is going to play out. The temperature outside is great and you’re loving it, there is no way anything can break your upbeat spirit today. Unfortunately you have a few errands to run before you can get back home and enjoy your day so you hit the door, anxious to get everything done and out of the way. The banks close early today so you decide to stop in and make a withdrawal so you have some money for the poker game later that evening. Boom, in and out you’re back in your car and on the road in no time but oops you’re running low on gas so you stop to fill up. You pull up to the gas pump, you swipe your card and although it’s not pumping very slowly it still seems like it’s taking forever. This was not part of the initial plan you had so you get a little frustrated but it’s all good. Standing out there in that heat for so long has made you a bit thirsty so you decide to run and get yourself something to drink, and why not, you deserve it. You go up to the soda machine, grab the biggest cup you can, fill it up with your favorite drink and up to the counter you go to pay for it, but of course the days not going as smooth as you’d hoped and you have to wait in line. As you stand there you become anxious, you don’t care what is taking so long you just know you want to get home. Suddenly a man runs past you, he pulls a gun from his waistband pointing it at the cashier demanding money while waving it around and pointing it at you, yelling that if you move you die.
This wasn’t at all the plan today! What do you do?
Let’s go back a little bit here to when you were at the bank. Even though you were in a rush to get in and out did you notice the men sitting in their car anxiously watching everyone go in and out of the bank? Did you notice how nervous and twitchy they looked when you walked by their car?
Imagine if you had taken notice of them. They were very out of place and presented a totally different demeanor than any normal person should. In your mind you made a mental note of what they looked like, what they were wearing, and what they were driving. You don’t stare at them or fully focus on what they’re doing but your instincts tell you something isn’t right and you just so happen to remember everything you seen.
Imagine if you had noticed when those same men pulled up to the gas station as you were fiddling with the pump. Your frame of mind unexpectedly takes a jump, you are now suspicious as well as curious of whom they are because of what you have just seen previously and it’s made you a bit more alert. You want to know what these guys are up to. You pretend not to notice them but out of the corner of your eye you’re keeping watch. Granted it could be nothing to worry about but from what you’ve seen and felt you take a little extra caution as to what you do next. Are you being paranoid? Maybe in some people’s eyes you are but to you your goal is to survive and make it back home.
You still want your drink but you’re in no rush now, you sense something’s not right so you find ways to stall yourself from going inside so that you can keep your eye on these two. You grab a squeegee and begin to wash your window and when you’re just about done you see one of the men running inside while his partner stays at the wheel with the car running. Sudden panic fills your body as you suspect the worst. You now have two options, stay or go. You can call the police and tell them what you seen but you’re not one hundred percent certain that what is playing out in your mind is also what’s happening inside, and the police would probably never make it there in time anyway. You’re not responsible for those people inside and if that man is committing a crime in there you are not liable by any means to stay and help and you know that but you also know that there’s probably nobody else that has any idea as to what’s going on except those people inside.
From here on I think the decision as to what to do next would be up to whoever might be in this situation. If it were me I know what I would do, I would just be a little more cautious as to what happens the moment I open that door. If the scenario that was playing out in my mind was happening in real life there is no doubt that I wouldn’t hesitate to stop what was happening and many people that know me can account for that. I do carry a weapon, I carry it faithfully! I not only carry it for the protection of myself but for the protection of others as well and I will not question myself as to what must be done if a situation ever arises. I know the liability but I also know the law and I know where I can be justified, as well as where I can’t.
This isn’t about using a weapon to protect yourself; this is about using your mind. This is about awareness. Every day we are faced with decisions that must be made, sometimes within an instant. By keeping alert you can stay one step ahead and can possibly even stay alive because of it. There are many people out there that don’t pay any attention to anything going on around them; they are in their own little world as if they have tunnel vision, drifting blindly through their day. Tunnel vision can kill you and there is no coming back from that. By preparing your mind for the event of a catastrophe you can minimize the risk of what could happen. Threats exist everywhere we go. Ever since we were a child we have been warned of the dangers we may face, whether it be the hornets’ nest in the back yard or the ammonia under the sink we know to stay away from things that are dangerous. As we grow older the lessons we learned are embedded in our minds and we pass that information on to those we love and care about but the ability to learn anything more about what’s dangerous is not there unless someone shares that information with us.
Instinct of course is a wonderful thing; it has been the greatest factor in our survival for centuries. From the moment man began to walk this earth we as humans have been learning. Our ancestors began the long hard lessons of learning what hurts and what doesn’t and what can and can’t kill us but over time the those threats that they were faced with have diminished, life has become a lot less complicated because those fears we once had don’t exist anymore. It’s become much more easier to survive these days, there’s no need to run out and take down a buffalo because there’s a McDonald’s right around the corner and it’s a lot quicker than having to make a weapon to hunt down your food, on top of having to make a tool to cut it up with and go out and forage for firewood to cook it. We’ve lost the instinct to survive but at the same time we still maintain the gift of fear, the fear of not surviving to see the next day.
As we humans have evolved we have had to learn what’s dangerous the hard way. Many of the dangers have been hardwired into our brains over generations and generations. Much of it has become natural instinct but with changing times come different threats, threats that have never been encountered. 9/11 for instance, nobody was prepared for that. The police, the firefighters, and EMS were able to respond the way they did because of training, they knew that people were in danger and they did what they were taught to do. The normal average everyday person does not have the knowledge embedded in their brain to know what to do when this type of catastrophe occurs because no one has ever faced this type situation before. There is absolutely no way anyone can ever be prepared for this type of situation. But consider that if we had been prepared, the pieces of shit that did this would have never taken control of those planes, the sad fact is that they would have never made it past security. The chain of events that occurred that day may have all been prevented had we as human beings been more alert and more aware as to what dangers we face in this day and age.
Life has changed drastically in the past century yet we as humans don’t seem to be following along very well. It understandably takes making a mistake for someone to learn but we can all learn from others mistakes, not just our own. We all learned on 9/11 that terrorists do exist, now whether you believe they are who our government says they are or not is up to you but none the less whoever caused it was a terrorist. From the moment that incident happened every one of us was put on high alert, for all we knew they were in our own backyard and we were all in danger. Many years have passes since then and things have calmed as if nothing ever happened and we have been convinced that it will never happen again. But who can ever promise you that it won’t happen again? I can’t. Our government sure as hell can’t! All you have to really rely on is yourself and the steps you choose to take to ensure your survival. By going through scenarios in your mind of what might happen in your everyday life, as well as practicing mock emergency situations with your family, you could discover the key to seeing yourself and your loved ones through to the next day by learning to keep a clear head and avoid panic.
There are five levels of awareness in the chart below. The first two, green and blue, should not even be a factor at this moment when our world is collapsing and people start to become more desperate to survive. I myself consider there to be only four levels of awareness. In my opinion if someone isn’t at least in their yellow zone right now then they are in the pink zone and living in la la land where everything is all happy hunky dory and they are oblivious to the threats that currently or could potentially exist. Knowledge is power and by knowing what you could be up against at any moment and by knowing what to do should the time arise you will be mentally stronger and one step ahead of the rest. I’ll be the first to agree that fear is what keeps us alive but it shouldn’t be about the fear of dying, it should be the fear of not surviving that should take precedence. If you choose to stay idle and do nothing to prepare yourself you could die anyway so why not take the chance at saving yourself and possibly many others as well.
I could go on for days and days with this but my purpose isn’t to preach, it’s to get you to think.
Know your surroundings, prepare for what you should do in a situation, and always do your best to stay one step ahead because for all you know that moment that you aren’t ready for could be your last.