Time For Change

written by Kris Costa

The hearts at Mindset are deeply saddened by recent events at Umpqua Community College.

Unfortunately, it is my belief that this will not be the last school shooting to take place. The rash of violence spreading across the nation against our schools and the innocents within is nothing short of evil.

My appreciation goes to the first responders, medical responders, crisis centers and others, whose grim tasks now include and necessitate drill upon drill of reacting to such domestic terrorist emergencies. No longer carrying an element of sheer surprise, these tragedies have become scenarios whose practiced responses are now a matter of protocol in our American culture. The re-enforced skill sets of our task forces, and other emergency preparedness teams and individuals have no doubt increased the likelihood of surviving such a horrifying scenario, however, much needs to be discussed and implemented to avert the terrorist act in the first place. It is not enough to deal with the after effects. These occurrences MUST be eliminated. It is my opinion that the most influential to facilitate effective change in our own schools lie with us, the civilian public.

I often wonder how many parents have asked the serious questions to our schools regarding  security and preventative measures, and if so asked, what are the responses?

Our government representatives and the like, will address various talking points around gun control, mental health, etc., all of which are vital and valid and necessary discussions to have,  for quite some time to come. However, let us not forget that it is not the government’s responsibility to appoint school security to all the schools in the nation and regulate it. Our Legislative branch will provide rules to govern society, and the Judicial branch will set ramifications when violations occur. The police and others will respond to such violations. However, the job of keeping our schools safe lie with us, the proactive general public. It simply is not acceptable or effective to wait around in fear for someone, or some other body of people, to do the job we need to be doing, which is stand up for safety of our youth and other personnel in schools.

If you are a parent, have you questioned your child’s school on security procedures? Do you know what the procedure is concerning lock down? Do you know if those procedures are drilled with any regularity? What situations are covered? Most importantly, how is the school addressing preventative measures? How is the school physically secured? Are there increased security measures in place?  Are there “No Gun Zone” signs posted? Does your school believe that is a deterrent? Would they consider additional preventative security measures if the budget for such could be supplemented? Would you pull your child/young adult out of the school if you were not satisfied with their answers? Is there a parent group formed and it is applying pressure  (and support) to the school to make the hard decisions and take serious action?

This is only the tip of the iceberg. Do your children know how to adapt to life where they hear about school shootings in the news regularly? Do they really feel safe? And there is so much more.

If it is not worth the effort to find the answers to the above, and more so, to do everything possible in our power to protect our children in school, then we may loose a lot more lives waiting for others to address these issues on our behalf. I believe in prevention, and it begins in our own neighborhoods. Speak up, form a collective, offer solutions, pressure the schools to respond, financially contribute. It’s not about who “should” be doing what, it is about doing the best we can and now. Lives matter.

There are so many facets to the issue of school violence and violence prevention. Enforcing physical boundaries against it, before it happens, may just be the easy part.

Here is the real question: If we could go back to the day before each school shooting, knowing what we know now, would there be one thing that could be done differently?  If the answer is no, then there is no need to pay attention to this post.

~KBC

“If-Then” Self-Defense

if-thenI am always interested in the studies of crime statistics, probabilities and scenarios. Certainly these studies yield important information and can act as prediction indicators of the occurrence of crime but the information they gather, simply put, are generalities. IF such and such is in place, THEN we may assume that x,y,z will follow. Basically, when it comes to crime indicators, I think the if-then scenario concludes the following predictability reliability: Sometimes. When it comes to predicting whether or not a certain person will commit a violent crime one must consider the individual with their ever changing experiences, chemistry and soul status. I am sure that even the most organic of us cannot predict with any certainty what another will do from one moment to the next.

No one is immune from crime. If we were, we wouldn’t need all those statistics, probabilities and studies to predict its occurrence in the first place. Life itself is an “if-then” scenario. If we are in the path of any number of scenarios that manifest into a violent crime, then we must know what to do. Danger is always brewing somewhere.

In terms of safety, we simply are safe until we are not. Sounds simple but it is true. Here’s another if-then scenario to think about. If you learn nothing, then you will know nothing. Although our basic instinct may be to survive in the face of danger, that often is not enough to actually survive. It is not enough to want to survive if you don’t know how.

Logically speaking, there are just too many threatening scenarios to think about preparing for. At the end of the day, we live with so many risks all around us that it just doesn’t make sense to consider them all and wonder which one we will most probably have to deal with. We rely on studies and statistics, to make educated choices about our safety based on our best guess of where we fit into those statistics and that is helpful, however, crime doesn’t always make sense therefore statistics can not be 100% accurate and only so much of our society can be patrolled at once.

Simply put you will never really know what is coming your way until it is happening.

The only thing we can really rely on is ourselves. The best defense to the myriad of risks that ebb and flow around each of our interactions in life is to know where we stand within them. By it’s very nature, violence is not a predictable event. If it were, no one would become a victim, and clearly, there are victims of violent crime every day all day long.

What safety really becomes is another if-then scenario. Simply put, if I am attacked, then I need to know what to do to survive. If I know what to do then it doesn’t really matter if I am attacked. I know how to defend myself so I will.  That skill will help me get out of trouble. It is the same way that I approach renting a car at the airport. If I know how to drive, then it really doesn’t matter what make or model they hand me the keys to.  If I know how to drive, then I will and increase my chances or arriving safely because I have the basic skill. You cannot always predict which threat in life you will have to deal with, but if you know how to protect yourself, then your chances of survival increase no matter what situation you find yourself in. But only if you have the skills.

We are not born with appropriate self-defends strategies because the nature of threats against us change with the climate of the era. However, it is essential that we do learn to protect ourselves because we never know which situation we will be handed. Without skills, we live a life of chance of which threat we may actually encounter, and common sense tells us that it is not a matter of If, but a matter of when.

~KBC

Mindset Self-Defenese offers workshops, products and a cutting edge magazine dedicated to the self-defense, personal protection and safety of women. Learn more at http://www.mindsetselfdefense.com

 

Domestic Abuse & Brainwashing

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written by

Ellie Izzo, PhD, LPC and
Vicki Carpel Miller, BSN, MS, LMFT
http://www.vicarioustrauma.com

Domestic Abuse is an umbrella term that covers different dimensions of abusive relationships: verbal, emotional, physical, and spiritual. It is important to understand and recognize the traits of an abuser as well as the traits of being in the victim position in order to transform into healthy change. Here are some of the traits of an abusive partner:

• Competitive with his/her
• Quick with comebacks or put-downs
• Controlling
• Critical
• Lack of compassion
• Extreme
• Unable to be empathic
• Has difficulty listening
• Irritable
• Hostile
• Angers easily
• Shuts Down/goes dark
• Acts like a nice person to others
• Often is involved in one or more addictions

After living with this type of personality over time, the victim begins to experience a form of brainwashing. Here are the characteristics of brainwashing:
1. Omnipotence – the abuser behaves like he/she has all the power
2. Futility of the situation – the victim Is led to believe there is no way out
3. Threats – the abuser intimidates and undermines the confidence of the victim
4. Isolation – the victim is frequently barred from having outside attachments
5. Occasional Crumb – once in a while the abuser does something nice to keep the victim believing that things are going to improve.

Here is an example of the abusive system: Bill and Mary were married for three years and were very involved in their church activities. Bill was extremely jealous if Mary wanted to do any activity outside of work or the church, and would become threatened, and would proceed to “brainwash” his wife. Let’s look at the brainwashing cycle using Bill and Mary as an example.

1. Omnipotence – Bill was an elder in the church and wielded his power as a Godlike figure. He would speak down to Mary and criticize her imperfections.
2. Futility of the situation – Bill would denigrate Mary’s looks, her lack of education, and her confidence; often saying things like, “no one would ever want you.”
3. Threats – Bill would threaten that if Mary left him, she would be damned by the congregation and banned from the church, her primary support system.
4. Isolation – Bill prohibited Mary from being away from him by tormenting her with constant calls and texts when she was away from the home.
5. Occasional Crumb – when Bill sensed that Mary was maxed out from his abusive behavior, he would switch gears and temporarily act like the partner she always wished he would be.

If any of these red flags apply to you, please remember what you deserve to experience in your relationship:

• To communicate and feel heard and respected for your thoughts and feelings
• To feel safe and acceptable just as you are
• To not suffer personal attacks.To be able to accept constructive feedback without feeling worthless.
• To receive a genuine, heartfelt apology,without caveats or conditions.
• To be with a partner who can take responsibility for his/her anger and communicate it in a constructive way that serves to bring you closer together.
• The right to say “no.”
• The freedom to grow and experience outside interests.

If you find yourself in an abusive relationship, you will need help to debrief from the brainwashing and guidance to lead you out of the fog of conflict. Please seek the appropriate support and you will find your strength and renew your faith in yourself.

ONLINE RESOURCES FOR HELP

Emotional Abuse
www.eqi.org/eabuse1.htm

Understanding Emotional Abuse
www.focusonthefamily.com/abuse 

Emotional Abuse
www.women’s health.gov/emotionalabuse

Read more about Domestic Abuse in our March Issue of Mindset
http://joom.ag/3UOX

 

 

Scamming Season!

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With tax season upon us, it’s time to turn our attention to the risk of scammers! Scamming take many forms but during tax season, be on the lookout for phony emails, phone emails and phone calls. These scammers mimic the IRS and very convincingly ask for private information. Often times the threat is under the guise of you receiving checks in the form of additional refunds, economic stimulus checks or other bogus monies. Don’t believe them! It is your account they are looking to access to give themselves a little extra cash!

Remember! The IRS will never contact someone by email, and if you are so tempted to open one that is sent to you, you may just end up with a virus. Do not open! If you are truly receiving a tax refund, you will receive a notice in the mail.

If you do get a call from someone saying they are from the IRS, ask for their badge number and call back. You can call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040. The IRS never needs to ask for PIN numbers or passwords. If they need access to your bank account, they can just do it.

Be safe and smart during tax season and stay a step ahead of these scammers!!!

Modern Day Chivalry

Chivalry Cover

written by David Bravo

Romance novels and blockbuster movies have been written about men who are courageous, strong, disciplined, loyal, generous and honest. Such works move men deep in their souls, because many of us know we are not who we were born to be.

Chivalry, which may be defined as a code of conduct and rules for behavior of an individual or group, dates back to the Medieval period which lasted from the 5th to the 15th century in Europe. The Medieval period began when the Western Roman Empire collapsed, continued through the Renaissance Era and into the late Middle Ages. Chivalry is often associated with the title of knighthood, a rank of high honor conferred upon men by a monarch or other leader. During this period, knighthood was typically bestowed to horse-mounted warriors who exemplified military prowess, gallantry, unwavering loyalty, social fellowship and service to others.

Knights were closely linked with the Catholic church and displayed moral characteristics such as: honor, courtesy and love, and were expected to protect those who could not protect themselves, particularly elders, women and children. Additionally, knights were highly disciplined, honest, and respected the honor of women at all times.

Now that it is clear where chivalry came from and its premises, let’s investigate its application in modern day society.

First and foremost, I believe it is hard wired into every man by God Himself to have the heart of a warrior, as described above. God Himself is a warrior and has made men in His image. Sadly, it seems that many men do not recognize this aspect of their nature. Since we live in a nation that is heavily protected by so many of these modern day knights, the rest of us may believe that there is no need to be a knightly man. I would categorically disagree. On the contrary, we are in dire need of men to be knights now more than any other time in history.

We watch as traditional marriages decline and rates of domestic violence rise. We witness the objectification of women and watch as pornography becomes more and more accessible to our youth. Human sex trafficking is one of the quickest rising crimes today, both within and outside of our country’s borders, and illegal drugs are becoming legal. It is hard not to see the cause of the degradation of our society and our world, as the fall of man and our inability to live up to who we are all born to be. Can we not look at man and…read more here

I Challenge You!

…to get the stats!

If you picked up a newspaper, (ok, I am over 30) errr, or googled the news, or better yet, contacted your local police department, you probably would be shocked to see the amount of crime that is going on in your neighborhoods.  My office is in Scottsdale, AZ., so that’s what I checked. I simply entered “scottsdale violent crime statistics” in the search field and here is what I found:

2010 Crime Rate Indexes Scottsdale, AZ 85260 Arizona United States
Total Crime Risk 63 143 100
Murder Risk 58 144 100
Rape Risk 32 98 100
Robbery Risk 29 102 100
Assault Risk 33 112 100
Burglary Risk 66 139 100
Larceny Risk 48 127 100
Motor Vehicle Theft Risk 96 220 100

The data for Scottsdale, AZ 85260 may also contain data for the following areas: Scottsdale

“Crime Risk Index (100 = National Average): Index score for an area is compared to the national average of 100. A score of 200 indicates twice the national average total crime risk, while 50 indicates half the national risk. We encourage you to consult with a knowledgeable local real estate agent or contact the local police department for any additional information. Crime Indexes are based on numerous current and historical datasets as well as proprietary modeling algorithms which estimate values at more granular geographic levels when specific data is either unavailable or impractical to aggregate. While every effort is made to ensure accuracy, these are estimates and should only be used as a guide. For detailed information regarding crime and safety in a community, please contact local law enforcement agencies.”

Hmmm, although I am glad that Scottsdale falls under the national average in some crimes  (which we all know is too much to begin with) I wasn’t exactly pleased with the murder risk value. Burglary and rape didn’t exactly relax me either, nor did an overall crime risk of 63 which inched up toward the national average, and this is “Scottsdale”. Look at the rest of Arizona. Not too pretty at all.

Having moved here from NYC, I was wondering what was going on in that neck of the woods.  So I picked an affluent part of town located by Lincoln Center and the Julliard School to search next. Here is what I found there, and the comparison to Scottsdale.

2010 Crime Rate Indexes Scottsdale, AZ 85260 New York, NY 10023 United States
Total Crime Risk 63 133 100
Murder Risk 58 116 100
Rape Risk 32 80 100
Robbery Risk 29 432 100
Assault Risk 33 144 100
Burglary Risk 66 57 100
Larceny Risk 48 81 100
Motor Vehicle Theft Risk 96 111 100

If you live in Scottsdale, you may at first glance, think whew! (If you live in NYC this doesn’t surprise you, unless of course you live by Lincoln Center). However, Scottsdale, ask yourself two questions:

  1. Am I comfortable with the levels of crime that does exist in Scottsdale? Let’s face it, its not zero. And..
  2. Do I travel outside of Scottsdale, or do I live in a bubble?

I bet you’ve been to Tempe, a big college town as you probably know:

2010 Crime Rate Indexes Scottsdale, AZ 85260 Tempe, AZ United States
Total Crime Risk 63 162 100
Murder Risk 58 75 100
Rape Risk 32 117 100
Robbery Risk 29 115 100
Assault Risk 33 94 100
Burglary Risk 66 119 100
Larceny Risk 48 213 100
Motor Vehicle Theft Risk 96 288 100

OMG! Look at those numbers!  I am not saying this to scare you into taking care of your own personal safety and protection. I am saying it because it is happening. By the statistics in Scottsdale, 68% of you will not have a rape go to completion, however, 32% will! If you are in Tempe, the rape statistic goes up to 117, which is higher than NYC! Think again, where would you send your kids to school and what do we need to be teaching our girls??????

I want every woman to understand that learning to protect yourself is simply a VERY GOOD THING to know.

Stay safe out there, it’s Friday night. And we all know what alcohol and partying does to people’s judgment.

~KBC

 

Erin Go Bragh

Kiss-Me-Im-Irish

As green day approaches, lets take a moment to talk about awareness and safety!

  1. Pack light! Whether doing the pub crawl or visiting a house party, bring only your drivers license (or a designated driver!), a few bucks in your pocket and your cell phone.
  2. Beware of pick pockets and other hoodlums if attending a parade (situational awareness is the key here).
  3. If you are the designated driver (DD) be aware of those that are swaying around you, either in a vehicle or on foot!
  4. Consider public transportation.
  5. Avoid being alone, use the buddy system.
  6. Don’t drink on an empty stomach, eat and drink lots of water before and during the festivities
  7. Don’t EVER leave a drink unattended!
  8. Find the phone number of a reputable taxi company before you go out, just in case.

These are just a few pointers.

Have a great time and stay safe out there!!

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International Sportsmen’s Expo This Weekend

International Sportsmen’s Expo

http://www.sportsexpos.com/attend/2014/phoenix/

Come to the International Sportsmen’s Expo held at the University of Phoenix Stadium Thursday (2-20) thru Sunday (2-23) and visit with our fabulous partners:

PARTENRS AQUATIC CENTER FOR DOGS who work closely with Arizona Dock Dogs to train the dock world’s up and coming starts wil be holding a fabulous competition!

Stop by the GEAR UP CENTER booth and meet the inventor of the Crovel, Tim Ralston! He has some new innovative products to share with all who stop by!

TIM RALSTON, international spokesman and recurring featured survival expert on NatGeo’s #1 rated program DOOMSDAY PREPPERS, is also the innovator of several survival and outdoor adventure gear brands.  Tim integrated his lifelong love of the outdoors and adventure into founding Recon Outdoors and distributing under his Gear Up Center and Ralston brand. His company is an industry leader in developing, manufacturing and acquiring cutting-edge outdoor adventure and self-reliance gear.

With a heavy emphasis on branding American Made products, Ralston strives to bring the best possible gear to market while creating American jobs. Created from his military and adventure experiences, many of his innovations have received worldwide attention as the best self-reliance/outdoor multi-tools in the industry. Tim contributes and shares his philosophies on self-reliance and preparedness education through media venues such as: National Geographic Channel, Fox News, Anderson Cooper Live, Guns and Ammo, American Survival Guide and many more.

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