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Self Defense/Stopping the trauma cycle


Hello Marc,

I read your essay "Groomed to Lose" and have a question for you.

You speak about developing new experiences.But what do you do when the "flash floods" you are experiencing are keeping you from developing these new experiences?Just as an example,take a singer with stage fright.If he goes up to sing and it comes out bad because he is nervous and everyone boos him off stage,isnt this just going to reinforce his stage fright?How do you break out of a negative cycle like this?It seems like a chicken and egg situation where you have to be confident to succeed but you need to succeed to be confident.So for someone with a strong history of trauma,how do they start developing new positive experiences when they are constantly plagued with bad and irrational emotions?

First off, you're talking about something that you shouldn't try to do yourself.

The fact that you're asking the question indicates how you're already running into self-sabotage.

There are all kinds of skills, knowledge and techniques to help people through this process. Stuff that you can't see or know if you're in the process yourself.

What you are asking about is not something that someone can do to themselves and have it work. Basically we can't see our own blindspots, so you need someone from the outside looking in. Things that seem to be the absolutely best response to 'us' are often the wrong thing and not effective.

Talk with a therapist to help you develop a balanced approach. This stuff is not therapy, but it is very theraputic.

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Marc MacYoung


Street self-defense, crime avoidance and personal safety


I grew up in the streets of Los Angeles in 'situational poverty.' I have dealt with criminals and violent people all my life -- both personally and professionally. I have written 15 books and 6 videos on surviving street violence. I was originally published under the name Marc Animal MacYoung. (Animal was my street name). I've taught police and military both internationally and within the US. I've lectured at universities, academies and done countless TV, radio, newspaper and magazine interviews. I'm a professional speaker on crime avoidance and personal safety. And I am an expert witness recognized by the US court system. My bio is at My abridged CV (Curriculum Vitae) is at

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Too numerous to list here. My CV (for my expert witness work in court) is at

Read "In the Name of Self-Defense" the streets don't give a Ph.D in scuffle.

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