Integrated Self-Defense is the process by which self-defense, be it of your body, emotions, spirituality, mind, or other part of “you” is incorporated into your psyche, allowing you not only to know self-defense, but to believe 100% that you are worth defending. I believe that for many women, self-defense is like receiving a compliment. You know you have received one, appreciate that you have, but somewhere on the inside, doubt our worthiness. Integrative self-defense is believing that you are worth defending, much the same way we would believe in other things without question.
You already possess this ability. You always have. When you were younger, you took things on face value. If someone you trusted told you something, like a parent or teacher, you simply believed them. End of story. It became your truth. Then you ventured out into the world and realized you had your own truth, some of your beliefs from childhood fit your truth some did not. That is how we differentiate from one and another.
Many of our “truths” have come from places that have ulterior motives for us believing in them. They may come from media, societies, peer pressure, family pressure, men, other women, or even people who have not come to their own truths and tinker with yours in the process. We may feel wounded, hollowed out in our stomachs. We respond by putting up our defenses, but often these defenses come out in ways that make matters worse.
Integrative defense is simply identifying when someone or something has crossed our boundaries and believing that we have the right to respond to it in a way that minimizes or eliminates our exposure. We do not have to be uncomfortable at the hands of others, only at the hands of ourselves when we are looking to grow.
Wouldn’t it be a different world, if we believed we are worth defending every time we hear a put down, or face an unfounded insecurity, experience peer pressure, consider our body image, or the myriad of other doubts that we face on an almost every day basis? Certainly we do feel these ways, whether we realize it or not, and we do respond.
The goal of Integrated Self-Defense, therefore, is to create an unconscious internal, cellular belief system that responds appropriately in the face of personal boundary infringement. We all have the right to develop in a positive environment, and to believe that we deserve to. After all, how can we be accountable for our own actions if we are dictated by others?