All my life, I've just never liked fighting. That doesn't mean I never fought; I just didn't like it. My idea of close combat is an '06 at 500 yards. In my Social Insecurity years, I like the idea of fighting even less.
That said, it seems from all the comments I've read through several decades--as well as this forum--and comments from a teacher of an unarmed self-defense course I once took, that mindset has a lot to do with one's success.
That is, the stereotypical street fighter follows Vince Lombardi's advice: "Act like you've done it before". He's been there and knows the pain and (relatively) doesn't care. If you take a series of hard "for real" punches or strikes, and are emotionally startled, you're gonna lose, most likely. He's not going to stop until he's down or you're down.
If your inherent mindset is "hair, teeth and eyeballs", and you have skill, you may well win.
Is the above any sort of reasonable analysis? I'm not thinking of some Frat Rat who had a few beers too many and is feeling belligerent. I'm thinking of some guy who's grown up with violence as part of his life. It seems to me that avoidance or "beat feet" is general wisdom...