Here Great Courage and Fortitude is the Norm

Highest Battlefield of the World

This is the motto of the Siachen Brigade; the highest battlefield in the planet. Having served in the uniform for nearly 25 years, I understand courage. I understand valour. I understand bravery. I understand fortitude. I’ve lived it. Facing the incoming bullets of terrorists.

Courage is the choice and willingness to confront agony, pain, danger, uncertainty or intimidation. Physical courage is bravery in the face of physical pain, hardship, death or threat of death – even if it means inviting the wrath of the perpetrators of crime/ physical danger. Moral courage is the ability to act rightly, in the face of opposition, shame, scandal, discouragement or personal loss.

The recent incident in ‘The City of Joy’, Kolkata and the actions of a daughter of an Indian Air Force Officer, speaks volumes about the qualities that ‘fauzi’ kids imbibe. Ushoshi Sengupta, an ex-Miss India Universe, was confronted with a situation. She displayed presence of mind to capture the incident on her phone, approach the police (whose response was a blot to the uniform), was followed to her residence, mobilized people of her area and took control of the situation.

Build YOUr Self-Efficacy

Kudos !

The grit, resolve, courage both physical and moral were in ample display. But then, nothing less is expected from the people who breathe, live and extol discipline; the armed forces. People who are role models of our present day society. It is no wonder that her father is her inspiration! Hats off sir.

Lessons for Women Safety:

A. I keep harping on presence of mind. What is required to be done, has to be done. A quick plan of action .. what are the resources I can bank on.

B. Be fearless. You’ll get abundant courage; energy which you never realized you possessed. If you are gripped with fear, the amygdala will take over and stop blood supply to your pre-frontal cortex; your thinking brain. Your body is being prepared for flight or fight.

C. Standing up to the bully has always worked for me. Once you raise your voice, you realize that the bullies are all empty within – all noise. AND importantly, this goes on to build your Self-Efficacy. The next time your brain will tell you, you’ve been in such situations earlier and gets hardwired to handle them.

D. Raise your voice. Make it a priority to make this planet a better place to live in. A better place for my mother. My sister. My wife. My daughter. Parents teach your children better.

Hats off Ushoshi .. for showing the way!!!

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Fight Back

The Army taught me “Offence” is the only form of “Defence”. Very many times, I heard about ‘Self-Defence’ classes for women to protect themselves. Tch! Tch!

Take Control

When in doubt, attack! You’ve been attacked – counterattack! Bring it with a bang. Here are some key fight back principles. Remember: Fighting is the last resort! But when you gotta fight, you gotta fight hard. Your goal is to safely escape. Run, when you can.

Foremost – YOU are the weapon. Everything else is a tool, which can act as a force multiplier. The choice is between the perpetrator or YOU! YOUr commitment counts. YOU cannot be squeamish about this. What is non-negotiable. Clear any doubts in YOUr mind now, what is it you’ll fight for and what you’ll let be. What is acceptable and what is NOT?

YOUr strongest weapons of your body parts are: elbows, knees, legs, feet, hand, teeth, hips and of course your head! Strike these against his VPs (vulnerable points): eyes, throat, nose, neck, groin, abdomen, shin, knees. Be direct and explosive. Hit hard. Hit fast. Rip out his ears. Gouge his eyes. Smash is head. Crack his fingers. Strike his knees. It’s YOU or him!

Shout! In the Army, we have our war cries. It pumps up the adrenaline and adds 33 percent more power to your blows. It rallies the fighting spirit and sharpens your focus. Shout!

Your biggest ally is S.U.R.P.R.I.S.E. … Exploit timing. Exploit when he is talking. Attack without warning. Keep the initiative. Take him by surprise. Go for the gonads. Go for the eyes. Strike at his ears. Rip them off. YOUr goal is to drive him back to safely flee. If you are cornered, don’t struggle. Gather yourself to release with a sudden force with a War Cry. Don’t wait for big opportunities, grab small openings.

There are ‘n’ number of daily use items you can use to strike. Just use your imagination! Be aggressive! Overcome your fear of injury. Adrenaline will take care of it. Never give up hope or let futility set in. Futility results in paralysis. Focus. Focus. Focus. The assailant will let his guard down. When he is fumbling with his/ your clothes. When he is thinking he has won. Strike. Strike hard. Strike fast. Stay on the hunt.