Any Emotional Response to World Events is the Absolutely WRONG Response…

Putting this out there for your consideration:

In dangerous times when many events around you portend great calamity, the very worst thing you can do is respond emotionally to any of the stimuli made available to you.  This is the time that you should put your stoicism into practice, and be coldly and logically objective on what you might do to ensure you and your NPT members are prepared for the eventualities you evaluate as probable.  Put your emotions away when dealing with preparation or an emergency.  There’ll be time enough to let those out later.

Brackets added for clarity.

If you’re going to use anyone as your model, channel, “Captain Speirs,” from the HBO series, ‘Band of Brothers.’   Those familiar with the series can tell you this quote, or versions of it, “…the only hope you have is to accept the fact that you’re already dead, and the sooner you accept that, the sooner you’ll be able to function as a soldier’s supposed to function. Without mercy, without compassion, without remorse. All [successful] war depends on it.”  

In other words, without emotion.

Remember, as part of a NPT, whether as a leader or as a member, should SHTF, you are the only thing between an enemy and your ‘precious cargo.’  You can’t afford the luxury of being an emotionally driven man.

For example:

  • Do not take too seriously any videos/pictures or story you see on mainstream or web news sources, unless you can prove they were not manipulated.  Remember, mainstream news personalities have been caught with a ‘slip of the lip’ — they see their job as telling the citizenry what to think.  Always try to determine what is the desired outcome of any ‘news’ article or ‘leak.’  Always ask, ‘who benefits.’  Always follow the money to see who profits from one ’emergency’ or another.
  • Do not ‘panic buy’ supplies.  Keep on your plan for incremental increase for your larder and don’t use your cash reserves – you might need them later before you can refill your coffee can.
  • Do not vent your frustrations in public or at private gatherings that have people attending that are not like minded.  Save that for your closest friends and keep it private.  You never know who is listening and/or taking what they hear out of context and what the ramifications of that may be.
  • Do not stop your PT program.  Stick with it and up the intensity if you want; that’s what always helps me deal with stress, maybe it will for you, too.
  • Do not fall prey to the, ‘paralysis of analysis.’  In other words, don’t let your thoughts on current events overwhelm you so that you are basically sitting somewhere trying to figure out what you need to do.  Prioritize and execute.
  • Check and re-check your equipment.  It’s spring.  Take this opportunity to empty and clean your ruck, and re-waterproof it.  Same with your LBE.
  • Do not allow others’ speech or actions to ‘punch your buttons.’  Typically, when someone does that, they’re hoping for an unreasoned emotional response.  It’s not easy, but you can do it with practice.

If you need an inspiration, look no further than this man:  Admiral James B. Stockdale

Read his book, “Thoughts of a Philosophical Fighter Pilot.”  You can get it, here.  Here’s just one of the many facets of wisdom he imparts that will help see you through a crisis:

“You must never confuse faith that you will prevail in the end — which you can never afford to lose — with the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be.”

Or this one:

“It’s in disaster, not success, that the heroes and the bums really get sorted out.”

U.S. Navy File Photo: Formal portrait of Rear Adm. James B. Stockdale in dress white uniform. He is one of the most highly decorated officers in the history of the Nay, wearing twenty six personal combat decorations, including two Distinguished Flying Crosses, three Distinguished Service Medals, two Purple Hearts, and four Silver Star medals in addition to the Medal of Honor. Later he obtained the rank of Vice Admiral, and is the only three star Admiral in the history of the Navy to wear both aviator wings and the Medal of Honor. U.S. Navy photo (RELEASED)

24 thoughts on “Any Emotional Response to World Events is the Absolutely WRONG Response…

  1. Pingback: DTG: Advice On Staying Cool | Western Rifle Shooters Association

  2. KJ

    Excellent Article!
    I very mistakenly thought we had 4yrs of Breathing Room.
    It’s apparent after this last week(more than anything) I was Wrong and No(-)Thing could be farther from the Truth!
    Predators don’t change there look, only the area and way they hunt, when “Press”ed to do so.
    Oh well, Guess thats Life.
    Mean while I’m/We’re BACK AT IT!!

  3. Aesop

    You have breathing room.
    How long that respite actually lasts is entirely out of your hands.
    The points of the OP are in full force.
    Take advantage of that respite.
    Continue to make your preparations day-to-day, exactly as before, and don’t run about like the average headless chickens of society do, battered back and forth like shuttlecocks by every pretend “crisis” ginned up by the NYT and their toadies.
    Pay attention to what’s going on, but don’t be driven into a panic by it.

  4. long shot

    All of my elders were WWII combat vets. They had some words of wisdom passed to me before I left for the service in 71. “Intelligence is a god given gift…Wisdom is surviving long enough to use it to maximum advantage”or “ The early bird may get the worm….But the second mouse gets the cheese”

    Cool Calm Collected.

  5. William Wallace

    Excellent post. My favorite scene from the greatest series ever. Fast forward to the scenes where Spiers does become emotionally driven- after his subordinate is shot in the head by a drunk soldier from another unit- but his actions wind up saving his soldiers life and he barely gets it in check before executing the guilty soldier. Spiers was a real life superhero.

  6. No Body

    To have white text on a black background, you need to use fonts specifically designed for it. You may think it is a cool style choice, but it makes it hard to read.

  7. Richard Raymond

    By the way James Stockdale’s philosophy on stoicism is in PDF form om the internet.

  8. Arminius


    Once again you have hit the nail on the head. Thanks for all that you do.

    Since last Tuesday I have chosen not to publish anything about the original incident (although I have commented throughout the blogosphere) or on any of the fallout (pun intended) since then. Too many people are running around like Chicken Little. We need to visit again with folks who lived through the Cuban Missile Crisis for some perspective.

    There is also WAY too much misinformation about chemical weapons and their effects circling around the internet as well. Double that for nuclear weapons. In a phrase, there are many variables that are involved in nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons effects. Period.

    There were two books that jumped into mind on the Tuesday evening of the original incident: “Alas, Babylon” (1959) by Pat Frank. Specifically, the scene in the book that was the incident that caused WWIII, in which a Navy fighter jockey fires a missile that goes cockeyed and blows up a Russian ammo dump in the port city of Latakia, SYRIA. The other book was “The Clowns of God” by Morris West, in which chronicles the lives of folks trying their best to stave off WWIII. I recommend both of them during this time.

    I know that both you and I have written and shared many thoughts on Stoicism. It is a great counter to the explosion of emotionalism that is running rampant right now.

  9. Pingback: Any Emotional Response to World Events is the Absolutely WRONG Response… | Parker County Blog

  10. ragman

    Excellent article and Adm. James Bond Stockdale’s book is a real gem! I have read it, re-read it and constantly refer to certain passages for guidance and moral support. Yes, it is that good.

  11. Grenadier1

    Comments got closed on this post at WRSA so I will respond to Klein here if I may DTG.

    I made reference to this piece by DTG and drew an analogy to Ruby Ridge.
    Jim Klein asked me to elaborate on what I thought of the Weavers. Did I think Randy Weaver had an obligation to work with the ATF so on so forth.

    The reason I did not elaborate in my initial comments on what I thought of the Weavers beliefs is because it does not matter what I think about them. Beliefs do not make reality. The Weavers believed in ZOG and a very fringe version of Christianity. I dont believe those things but it does not matter. They allowed their beliefs and philosophy to consume them and color their analysis of reality.
    It took me a little bit to come up with an analogy that I think conveys what I am trying to say here.

    The Philosopher and ideological purist rides the sinking Titanic down into the cold depths because he cannot square his unshaken belief that the ship is unsinkable. He develops all manner of excuses and conspiracies to explain why the ship is not performing as its blueprints and engineering concepts predicted.
    The Realist gets into the life boats. Understanding that no matter what we think is supposed to happen, no matter what we think is right or wrong, the ship is still going down and we cant do anything to stop that. We can debate it and try and figure out how to fix it but we can only do that once we get to dry land.

    People like the Weavers and many of the people that are in the FREEFOR movement are controlled by their beliefs and preconceived notions. They cherry pick information that supports their beliefs and dismiss anything that runs counter to it.
    The community suffers from a bloat of conspiracy thinking. Now normally this would not matter much but it is how we use this thinking to form our outlook and guidance that is a MAJOR issue.

    You have to stop and ground yourself again. Get a fresh look and wipe the slate clean.

  12. Defensive Training Group Post author

    Hey there, G1! Thanks for stopping by. Been a long time. Hope to get down your way again one day soon. I’d only add to what you said this way: “…many of the people that are in the FREEFOR movement are controlled by their [emotions], beliefs, and preconceived notions [usually based on emotional analysis instead of logical, objective, reasoned thought].”

    You can drop in here anytime!

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