Monday, September 14, 2009

How to Fight for Your Goals: Social Combat Theory

Avi Schneider
Lulu (2009)
ISBN 9781409283362
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (8/09)

In "How to Fight for Your Goals," author Avi Schneider teaches you how to apply your martial arts skills to more than combat situations.  You can also use these skills to help you achieve goals in your personal and professional life.  According to the author, "Social Combat arises any time an entity attempts to exert influence over another entity, which will not readily accept that influence."
By reading this book, I am learning how to apply these strategies to go beyond the physical and actually work with behavioral responses to situations.  I also enjoyed the discussions about how this theory applies to psychological theories.  The author states, "Martial Arts is a discipline that teaches effective strategies and techniques to combat opposition to ones goals. Any opposition."  Learning how to apply the strategies to other areas of our lives makes the training much more meaningful.
Physical attacks are discussed, and demonstrated in photos, to show how they can also be applied to social situations.  The three main types of opponents and strategies for best handling them are also covered.  These three types are the Brawler, the Bluffer and the Boxer. In relating to social interaction, these opponents are viewed as aggressive, passive or in-between.
As an individual with a second-degree black belt in karate and a Master of Science degree in Counseling, I found "How to Fight for Your Goals" to be incredibly informative, presenting information that can apply to my everyday life.  I also realized that in some areas of my life, I had been subconsciously applying these strategies.  By reading this book, I have a much better understanding of how best to use them.  One of the reasons I began training in martial arts was with the hope that it would give me the confidence that I would need so that I would not actually ever have to fight.  But if I ever do, I am prepared.  The knowledge gained from reading this will definitely help me continue to avoid violence in confrontation situations.
I believe that utilizing the information presented in this book will assist me with achieving my goals outside of the dojo very effectively.  I highly recommend "How to Fight for Your Goals" by Avi Schneider to martial artists.