So, I got up and as usual sat in meditation for 30 minutes and was feeling pretty good. At 8am I decided to go to the local pool and do some laps. Now I am still in my floaties as my fitness is re building after having 3 months out after my ankle operation. I choose to do my laps in the recreation part of the pool as I tend to stop at regular intervals to catch my breath. There is no real structure or required pool etiquette for swimmers to follow in this part of the pool. Realizing this, I carefully swim between the people doing various forms of random exercises, content to work out in this part of the pool before I join the serious swimmers that follow the black lines religiously and take it all very seriously.

As I was leisurely making my way on my second lap back to the shallow end I went headlong into another swimmer. We did not collide with any impact, rather we brushed into each other. It was shallow enough to stand, and this elderly gentleman stood still and removed his goggles. I wondered what he was doing when suddenly he launched into a disgusting tirade of expletives because I had somehow invaded his precious space. Here I was, waiting for a “you okay mate”, nodding heads and getting on with our swims, but I soon realized that this lunatic was nothing but a bully and he had probably been getting away with bullying people his entire life. Well ladies and gentlemen, he successfully woke this bear out of hibernation.

I could have just left it and swam away, but I made a decision many years ago that I was going to call out bullies. Now he had my entire attention. I stepped towards him and as I spoke I made sure he felt my presence. I was not angry or aggressive, I was cold and neutral, the ultimate combat state. He swam off as quickly as he could without saying a word or looking back. I watched him as he got out of the deep end of the pool and made his way to the change room.

You see, if your intention aligns with your core and you become still and neutral, the weaker person will pick up the subtle signals and as bullies are cowards they will quickly feel fear, not know how to handle it and run off. This movement of energy from one person to another is a byproduct of essential martial arts training and almost a forgotten skill. I will be revising this important aspect in my Monday night classes next year. Winning without fighting.

1 Comment

  1. Marshall Brentnall on December 5, 2018 at 1:02 pm

    Thank you for sharing that story Andy, an excellent lesson for all. I am very much looking forward to my new schedule of Monday evening classes in 2019!

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