As advertised, today has been a plodding sort of day with much profanity, ouchness, and tired eyes. The knackered ankle clicking furiously and the knee’s gently reminding me that “Pain is natures way of telling you you’re alive”.
Funny thing, my DI used to say that too. (Didn’t believe him either).
Yet things needed doing, things got done, and as for walking from A to B? Well I like to think of me being first of the second group not in last place behind everyone else!
A talk about speed and thought.
It’s interesting to watch other people transit.
Three main types are what most people fall into.
The “I’m on a mission” people and the “mañana” (tomorrow will do) people in life. Then there are them who just seem to rush around as SOP.
When you watch ‘fast’ people and think about why they are operating flat-out, the main reasons for them being on a rush is that they are either late or are extremely bad at time management. In the main only a few are genuinely strapped for time because of ‘events’ or emergencies.
Yet do all them manage to get all their goals completed to a satisfactory conclusion? How many car accidents are caused by the stress of time pressure? How many people just fold (if not die).
I worked with an engineer who had one heck of a reputation of getting through his calls on time. As a result the management kept loading his appointment book with more and more despite his protestations. What happened? His work started to slip, too much in too little time. Customers got upset, bosses got upset, and at 25 years old he simply burnt out. What price his efforts? Stacking shopping trolley’s for a living as that’s about all he could manage.
A cautionary tale to think about as your appointment book fills up. Also something to think about when doing red-eye reports or presentations as a norm for an idiot boss.
Back to speed.
Firemen are often described as forever running into burning buildings. In reality few ever do because to run into in a fire or even a smoke-filled room is REALLY STUPID! They prefer to stay low down as it’s cooler plus the smoke is less dense closer to the deck. For these professionals it’s all about planning their moves not dying.
What price speed?
Except this bit ain’t all about speed, it’s about speed without thinking. In survival terms making a bad call in a hurry could (and in no particular order):-
- Kill you or others
- Hurt you or others
- Waste resources
- Waste time and effort.
Yet so many blindly rush into things.
On the other hand there are the UK authorities.
Risk assessment is God in the UK and mainly to the detriment of those who need saving. It’s also a reason to explain away a really bad call. Read this. It’s all about why police staff stood by while a 10 yr old Jordan Lyon drowned in a lake in Wigan.
How to stop snap decisions.
In an emergency I’ve adopted the STOP acronym to my decision-making. It’s taken a long time to accept it as I still tend to trust my gut first. BUT WHAT IS STOP?
STOP what you are doing (ONCE SAFE IN COVER).
THINK about what the problem is and what you want to achieve.
OBSERVE, look at what you have got and what’s around you.
PLAN. Work out a solution using your Intel and resources.
OK, some would argue that in a fire fight, TO THINK IS TO DIE.
Seriously (and sadly) I read that on a survivalist site!
On the other hand to blindly run for the exit and into the field of fire of another is pretty stupid as well. Hows about diving behind a sofa (settee). What’s the bullet protection factor of a cloth and foam piece of furniture again?
TO THINK IS TO DIE. So is being bloody stupid.
Anyway the first line says:-
STOP what you are doing (ONCE SAFE IN COVER).
And finally where speed is worthless.
I’m a hunter, forager and scavenger by nature.
Thus everything I do is slow and considered as nature loves movement. Eh?
Ever wondered why generally the first time you spot a critter is because it moves? It’s simply because it’s camouflage is generally good and the eye is better at detecting movement than subtle differences in color. So any brash uncontrolled movement on my side enables critters to see me.
To trap, go fishing, or when shooting for the table, you need to move at natures pace and seldom can you do that against the clock. Besides that the excitable make lousy shots as their body goes tense and starts shaking thus making for poor shot placement.
Anyone remember BRASS?
- “B” Calm your BREATHING.
- “R” RELAX before attempting the shot
- “A” Establish your AIM point
- “S” STOP and review your setup
Or some say (IMO wrongly) take up the trigger SLACK.
- “S” for SQUEEZE the trigger until the shot is fired.
Not so easy when you are full of adrenaline or emotionally up tight!
Then there is scavenging.
To scavenge successfully you need to gather Intel. You just can’t rush this process. Those who do usually coming unstuck by missing the “little” things in life.
To carry out surveillance in a CCTV rich environment, a secure area, or combat scenario, means you need to be careful and for the most part COVERT. If you are lucky you are going to see a weakness you can exploit but things can change from hour-to-hour and day-to-day. Rush into things without knowing the full story and it could be your lot.
Food for thought about speed isn’t it?