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Preview – Evolution Of Mindset

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Photography by Shinnosuke Tanaka

Self-Defense Isn’t Just About Having a Gun. From Understanding Physiology to Enhancing Tactical Decisions, LMS Defense Shows How Mind/Body Unity Can Save Lives.

You step inside your front door and then you hear something. Shuffling from upstairs. Odd, you think. No one should be here, not even you. You got home early from work, and your wife is having a girl’s night out. You don’t have kids or pets. Yet, there are distinct sounds of footsteps echoing upstairs. This can’t be good.

You immediately draw your CCW pistol and work ninja-like to the stairs. With every step, your heart beats faster. Your breath quickens. Then you burst into your bedroom with the muzzle forward — all you find is an empty bed with lit candles and rose petals everywhere. There’s a scream, but it registers only as a loud whisper. You swing your handgun to the right. The sights find a target. Your finger moves to the face of the trigger, taking up the first couple of pounds of pressure. As your front sight snaps into focus, you realize that you’re looking over the gun at your freaked-out wife, who’s standing near the adjoining bathroom in nothing but sheer lingerie and a pair of stilettos.

Smooth move, hotshot. You panicked, spoiled your wife’s romantic surprise, traumatized her in the process, and ruined any chance at the horizontal tango for the foreseeable future.

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While this account is fictional, it’s certainly not impossible. Few would argue that when people panic, they make mistakes, says Josh Jackson of Last Man Standing Defense (LMS), which offers tactical training to civilians, military, and law enforcement. As a co-founder of and firearms instructor at LMS, Jackson says that stress from a threat (real or perceived) causes physiological effects that, when not managed, can result in not just poor physical performance, but also bad decision making. So, what’s the best stress inoculation for those of us in the firearms realm? A proper defensive mindset.

Unfortunately, Jackson couldn’t find any courses dedicated to the topic. So, he helped create one. “What was lacking was a course for mainstream folks who don’t have jobs involving daily life-and-death decisions, but want to have some tools in their toolbox in the event that day comes,” says Jackson, who has more than 15 years of diverse law-enforcement experience, from patrol and K-9 handling to active-shooter-response instructor. “Many of these same students have spent countless hours on the range perfecting their firearms skills and little to no time learning to control the effects that stress has on them.”

Enter the LMS Evolution of Mindset program, an innovative two-day class that teaches students how to achieve mind/body unity in times of high stress so they can maintain situational awareness, perform at their peak physical capacity, and make sound decisions to avoid or win a fight. And it is one of the few, if not the only, course available to the public that’s dedicated solely to defensive mindset development. It doesn’t require sitting through boring psychology lectures or watching endless PowerPoint presentations on the OODA loop. The program takes a much more hands-on and holistic approach, covering everything from how fear affects your body and autogenic relaxation techniques to force-on-force training and home-defense tactics — all of which is aimed to keep a student’s cool so he can pick the most effective options in dire situations.


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