There are so many facets to self defense:
– Pistol skills
– Knife skills
– Verbal skills
– Empty hand skills
– Medical skills
– Legal skills
And each one of those could easily take a lifetime to master. We all know black belts and GMs that are still working to improve. That being said, it is very easy to get caught up in the pursuit of all of this that we manage to forget exactly what it is that we’re working so hard to protect:
Our lives, livelihoods, and well-being. It’s possible to spend so much time refining these skills that the rest of life gets neglected and falls by the wayside. There are some folks who choose to live their lives around the gun, and refuse to go anywhere they’re not allowed to carry (or risk the legal consequences of carrying where prohibited).
Then there are those who go the Travis Bickle route, hardening themselves for what they are certain is an imminent battle. For me personally, I choose to live as fulfilling a life as possible. I enjoy good food and drink, the arts, and travel.
My study of predators, violent criminal actors, and defense craft are there to supplement this lifestyle, and make sure that I’m able to have the broadest and most varied range of experiences possible.
It’s an easy trap to get caught in, and it’s not discussed much. I just wanted to highlight this pitfall so that more people are aware that it’s out there. Ultimately it’s your life. Live it how you choose. But I do think it’s worth asking the question whether or not you’re spending more time training than you actually do living.