As a martial arts and self-defence teacher I have to teach my students a complete range of reactions to different situations. There are times when the best thing to do is to act afraid, back away and leave a situation altogether. There are times when extreme and decisive violence is necessary and we must act without hesitation. Then, of course there are all the variations of these two extremes in between.
In most situations avoiding violence is the best choice. This might mean diffusing a potential conflict using appropriate body language and words. It always means having an awareness of your surroundings and staying away from dangerous situations.
Avoiding conflict is always my preference and this is the main lesson I teach my students.
There are times when violence may be necessary. For example in order to protect yourself or someone else from a violent attacker.
Be Aware of All Your Options
It is because I am aware of all my options
and have learned to evaluate when each is appropriate,
that I am able to be a kind and gentle man.
My gentle nature does not come from avoiding my dark side,
But by making friends with it.
Know When To Let Go
The same may be true in relationships.
There are times to gently let people go.
There are times to stick by people regardless of adversity and struggle
And there are times to run away screaming from certain people
As fast as possible.
This range of options exists in everywhere.
Knowing which is appropriate and when can bring great peace to one’s life.
Teach The Full Range Of Options To Your Kids
This discernment has also been an important part of my parenting.
Teaching my brave and beautiful daughter to truly love, be generous and fearless
Has required also teaching her true inner strength.
She knows she is worthy, she knows she is loved and she loves herself.
She will not stand for abuse or for being controlled.
She stands up for herself when she needs to and can raise her voice when appropriate.
Never Fight, but…
I’ve always taught my daughter.
Avoid fighting at all costs.
Spread love and harmony everywhere you go.
But if you have to fight… Win.
Win with efficiency, finality and extreme brutality.
Knowledge and Acceptance Develop True Strength
Because she is a giant within,
she can be soft, gentle, generous, forgiving and loving
without the fear of being weak.
There is no weakness in these qualities,
though they are often perceived as such.
When they come from a solid foundation
they are the strongest forces we have access to.
Gentle, Conscious Parenting Is Not Weak Parenting.
It builds lasting inner strength.
It accepts all aspects of our being
The light and the dark
Joy and sadness
Courage and fear
Peace and anger
and develops the discernment to choose what is most appropriate in each moment.