Episode 17

Episode 17

Episode #17: The Misconceptions of Violence and Self-Defense with Wim Demeere

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Depictions of self-defense and violence in TV and film naturally give us a sense of safety and reassurance that the bad guy will lose and that you should always take a criminal head on. Unfortunately, the theatrics of it all have given men (and women) a false look at self-defense. In this week’s episode, Kelly and Doug speak with martial arts and self-defense expert, Wim Demeere, and reference Wim’s widely-shared self defense blog post Self-defense tips for men. Together they discuss the complexities behind self-defense including: taking ownership over your actions, the importance of leaving your ego at the door, and de-escalating tense situations before violence occurs. 

For more of Wim’s instructional self-defense content, check out his Patreon site, updated monthly. There are over a thousand posts and hundreds of videos as he’s been doing this for over five years now. There is something at a price point for everybody and you can try it for free for a week.

Other topics we discussed:

  • Negative effects of romanticism of violence in TV and film
  • How to not let your ego affect your decisions in conflict
  • Understanding the distinctions between social and criminal violence
  • Defining your mission before conflict ever arises
  • Deescalation tactics for when a conflict occurs 
  • The importance of self-awareness and ownership in conflict
  • How to face threats from other individuals (Peyton Quinn’s Rules)
  • Why a face-saving exit in conflict isn’t the safest option
  • The Highway of Violence

Wim Demeere has almost 40 years of training in several martial arts and self-defense systems: Kung Fu, Tai Chi Chuan, Sanshou, muay Thai, MMA, etc. 

He has been a full-time personal trainer since 1994, has occasionally worked as a bouncer, and in his words, he had a non-eventful military service. Wim has been a national champion Quinda multiple times, and won a bronze medal at 1993 Wushu World Championships Sanshou (-90Kg). Wim has shared his knowledge with thousands of people as the author of numerous instructional books, self-defense videos, and his podcast  titled, Wim Demeere’s Podcast. He is the owner and writer of one of the oldest martial arts and self-defense blogs, Wimsblog.com.

Connect with Wim:

Website: https://wimsblog.com/ 

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/ptccm 


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/WimDemeerePage

Check out the blog post referenced in this video: https://wimsblog.com/2013/04/self-defense-tips-for-men/ 

 Connect with Doug and Kelly: 

 Follow The Diamond Arrow Group on Instagram and Facebook, and Kelly Sayre on LinkedIn and Twitter.

You can find Doug at @texasspydad, or on LinkedIn and Twitter.

Check Kelly’s new book Sharp Women that guides you through embracing your best self-defense weapon – your intuition.    

Please click ‘Follow’ or ‘Subscribe’ on your favorite podcast platform, and we’d love to hear what you think is the best piece of advice you’ve heard on the podcast to-date in a Review on your podcast platform!

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To wear or not to wear, that is the question

To wear or not to wear, that is the question

I received a question on the Diamond Arrow Group Facebook page from a follower last week. The woman had an upcoming work trip and wondered if wearing company logo wear or personal clothes while on the trip would make her less of a target. As with 99% of situational questions I get, it depends. Here’s the conversation we had. Let me know what you think!

Follower: Do you think you make yourself less of a target if you are wearing work logo (traveling for work) compared to if you are dressed for leisure/personal…. If I’m traveling for work, someone else knows about my wear abouts vs leisure/personal where no one might even realize I am traveling…. penny for a thought??

Kelly: Great question. How I think about it is, if I’m evaluating you as a potential target, I could google your company and see where it’s based. That tells me if you’re traveling for work vs. daily commute. If I spend a few seconds on the company website understanding what it’s about, I may use that info to strike up a conversation pretending mutual interests. If I can get you to open up and have a conversation, I may ask questions that tell me why you’re in town, where you’re staying, how long you’ll be in town, and how many people you’re traveling with.

If you’re in personal clothes, I will not know if this is your hometown or not. Which raises the risk that you are familiar with the area and the people around you. This also presents more of a risk that you carry tools that won’t pass TSA inspection (traveling tends to minimize tool choices).

It’s not so much about do this, don’t do that-it’s about being conscious of the information you broadcast (verbal & non-verbal, logo wear-whether work or personal) and recognizing behaviors that seem off (too curious, too intrusive) from normal stranger behavior.

Follower: I’m heading out Sunday night for business and I’ll be traveling with my boss, we’ve usually gone together, but we have a co-worker that is joining us a few days later on her own and made me think about the situation if I was traveling by myself. And great info!! Made me think about things I wouldn’t have.

Answering questions about personal safety and helping people see things from different perspectives, in order to increase their personal safety, is one of my favorite things to do. If you have a question for me, send me an email, DM, or post on the social channels and I’m happy to help!

Imposter Syndrome & Situational Awareness

Imposter Syndrome & Situational Awareness

When I started The Diamond Arrow Group and had to create the website and social media channels, I started hearing voices in my head.

“What are you doing Kelly?! What makes you an expert?”

“Why do you think you are capable of doing this?”

“You’re going to make a fool out of yourself when everyone realizes you’re a rookie!”

Imposter syndrome is real, and it affects a lot of women.

Maybe a big promotion has opened up at your company, or you got asked to tell your story on a stage, or you are offered an opportunity to do something outside your comfort zone. What is the first thing that goes through your head? You might have a split second of excitement before that voice in your head says,

“but if I say yes, they’ll discover I’m not an expert and realize I’ve been faking it all along.”

Dr. Valerie Young has been helping people for decades who struggle with feeling like an imposter. She breaks it down in to four “competence types” in her book, The Secret Thoughts of Successful Women: Why Capable People Suffer From the Imposter Syndrome and How To Thrive in Spite of It.

  1. The Perfectionist – 99 out of 100 equals failure
  2. The Expert – need to know and understand EVERYTHING, otherwise they’re a failure
  3. The Soloist – needing to ask for help is a failure
  4. The Natural Genius – if they struggle at something on the first try, they’re a failure
  5. The Superwoman/man/student – need to handle it all perfectly and at the same time, or they’re a failure

Do any of those competence types sound familiar to you? For me personally, “The Expert” type is the one I struggle with the most. When I started The Diamond Arrow Group Facebook page, I literally started sweating as I was inviting friends to like the page. That voice kept saying,

 “Who are YOU to say you are the expert at teaching Situational Awareness to women?”

 “Did you get a degree in this field? Did you read enough books?”

 “All these women you’re inviting to like your page are going to think you’re crazy!”

 When I mentioned my struggles to a close group of friends who’d become my sounding board, one of them blurted out, “Don’t you worry that if you DON’T get out there and talk about this, someone might die?”

It was a dramatic statement in stark contrast with my imposter syndrome inner voice, so we got a good laugh out of it, but it also was a light bulb moment for me. The longer I wallowed in my fears, the less opportunities I had to share what I knew and help someone live a safer and more confident life. I shifted that inner voice from “I so nervous” to “I’m so excited!”. Any time that little voice started going to the negative side, I would stop it and think about how excited I was to have the amazing opportunity to share what I knew about situational awareness with other women.

Maybe you have a little voice in your head saying you could never tell a stranger to back off if they got too close. Maybe you worry that if a guy you know started making you uncomfortable, you wouldn’t know how to make it clear you don’t like their actions. Maybe you struggle with self-confidence in your ability to physically defend yourself, so you walk with your head down and avoid eye contact. I totally understand. Let me help you build your confidence so you can move forward and live life on your own terms.

If you want to stop feeling that way, you must stop thinking that way. You got this.