Flight or Fight instincts in conflict resolution

From Douglas Field’s interview on his book, “Why We Snap” with Diana Kwon.

There’s some interesting things in there, like his assessment of threat levels “L.I.F.E.M.O.R.T.S.” is relatively common sense – where he goes with it in talking about the cerebral cortex not communicating except with emotion.  I find it also interesting that he doesn’t really touch on previous experience as an amplifier of the emotions felt.

The last chunk of the interview is one of the most interesting for me, especially based on personal experience of having friends killed.  Douglas seems to try and justify his actions of aggressively going after the pickpocket to get his possession back.  Douglas later comments that Navy Seals wouldn’t fight someone over their wallet.

Immediately in the interview Douglas flags his own aggression as the correct response – as he got his wallet back.  That just makes me cringe as a self-defense instructor.  In fighting back, you never know where the violence stops – whether it stops with getting the wallet back or once you grab someone, they shoot you with a gun or their backup person jumps you and kills you instead.  However many people you have with you, you have to assume there will be capable back up to your assailant too.

As a scientist, he’s using dubious scientific process in stating that he’s correct to grab the pick pocket, if we query the news – we find that it is more likely someone gets hurt than gets their wallet back (allowing for news bad news bias – not any in depth examination of police reports – which obviously Douglas did not do either).

Still the information he brings in the form of science about our bodies is an interesting read – if vaguely “Blink” style antidotes.

I found another review of his book … Link


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