Inside the Mind of a “Bad Guy”

Do you really think you can spot someone who means you harm? Most of us cannot, for various reasons. By the time you do figure it out, a would-be attacker is already several steps ahead of you… Gavin de Becker and Rory Miller are widely regarded as thought leaders when it comes to understanding the emotional and psychological nature of violence; how to prevent it, and how to react to it. While there is some overlap in the highly useful information they provide, they also have very unique perspectives and guidance on how to prevent violence, what to do if you find yourself in real danger, and how to deal with the aftermath of an attack. In this article I highlight their individual contributions to this knowledge base and share some of the most important points I have taken away from their writings, lectures and publications.

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The Gift of Fear: Gavin de Becker

Source: Adobe Stock by DedMityay

Gavin de Becker grew up seeing violence first hand in his own home. His mother committed suicide when he was 16 years old and he moved in with a Beverly Hills High School classmate, Miguel Ferrer (the son of actor José Ferrer and singer Rosemary Clooney). The family later hired de Becker as a road manager, a job which positioned to him to do the same for other famous Hollywood types. In 1978, he established the consulting firm, Gavin de Becker and Associates.

” The way I broke down the individual elements of violence as a child became the way the most sophisticated artificial intuition systems predict violence today. My ghosts had become my teachers. “ ─ words from Gavin de Becker, as penned in his book: The Gift of Fear

1 thought on “Inside the Mind of a “Bad Guy””

  1. Great post, Kurt! I started reading books by Gavin de Becker and Rory Miller many years ago and it really opened my eyes to a whole new level of thinking about self defense. Self defense is not just a collection of techniques and drills, but a mindset that relies on instinct and an understanding of the way that criminals and predators think and act. All of the books by these two authors contain a wealth of knowledge that can’t be picked up in a single read – your post reminded me that it’s about time to head back to their books for another pass.

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