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Old November 3, 2011, 10:57 AM   #1
Bartholomew Roberts
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Use of Mental Maps to Develop Awareness

Shooting Illustrated is doing an interesting series of articles on building awareness in order to detect predatory threats as early as possible. The second part of this series deals with the use of mental maps as a key tool in being more aware:

One theme I found interesting was that much like building the good muscle memory to shoot accurately and quickly, the author advocates building your mental maps to be more aware and practicing them on a daily basis so that ultimately, you are unconsciously executing the good habits that make you more aware.
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Old November 3, 2011, 01:01 PM   #2
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You can also check out Boyd's Loop:
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Old November 8, 2011, 08:10 AM   #3
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from studying mental maps in monkeys ( im a psychology student) i'm impressed the article you posted was able to flesh it out so much.... basically your mental map is as you know, the world around you.

so going to work, you can close your eyes and probably run through that in your head and yes, awareness is increased, maybe because you go through a bad area when its dark during winter.

jsut remember that a mental map for actual tactics is only as useful as the current people involved so i guess escape routes are the things to memorise.

The author seems to interchangeably use what you say as the ' good habits' to keep you safe and aware when that isnt really a mental map its more summing up your current surroundings. mental maps are just memorising geography.

.... I'm now aware I sucked all the fun out of that.
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Old November 8, 2011, 08:25 AM   #4
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Good article. All of us should have situational awareness and be able to identify "personal space". I have definite boundaries of my personal space and become on hyper-alert if someone should approach the space. It is not an easy trait to develop and one must work at it. For me, it happened in Vietnam. I just developed feelings when someone or something invaded my perimeter of personal space. I went into hyper alert which is another way of saying my survival mode kicked in.

Some 40 plus years later, I still retain those mental maps. I notice everything and everyone around me. I have a plan of action and thus far, it has kept me and my loved ones safe. And that should be the goal of each and everyone of us, be safe without ever having to utilize our weapons by utilizing good judgement to keep us away from situations that will require us to use our acquired skills of marksmanship and self defense.
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Old November 8, 2011, 11:05 AM   #5
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Among other things, I am a retired Safety Manager. Long ago I developed a habit of counting the number of doors to the nearest fire exit in a hotel, the rows of seats to the exits on an airplane. I routinely test the exit doors on hotels. this has resulted in a number of intresting discussions with hotel staffs.

As I moved into more populated areas, I developed the following habits.

When going to public places I allways identify emergency exits, Hard cover for protection and observe other occupants for potential threats.

Prior to moving out of the Phoenix Valley, I located and drove alternative evacuation routes which are not passable to ordniary vehicles. A million or so people trying to leave the Valley at the same time will insure that few escape.

AS a defensive driver I keep aware of traffic. I look for avenues of escape to avoide traffic accidents and your occassional carjacker.

I allways listen to the hair on the back of my neck. It will tell you of a problem before you are aware there is a problem.
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Old November 8, 2011, 07:24 PM   #6
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My mental mapping generally is "scenario shopping" as I go about my daily tasks. I take a "possible" scenario that could occur where I am going, . . . walk through it, . . . make a plan.

I learned to do this as a member of a "damage control" team aboard a couple of destroyers in the Navy, . . . and at a PBR base in Viet Nam.

I was always amazed in the service how well those "scenarios" played out when one would come up. It usually had a different flavor than the original, but was close enough to the original that many of the previously thought thru steps were applicable to this problem.

I believe in mental mapping, . . .

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Old November 17, 2011, 01:55 PM   #7
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Some great info in that article, and in this thread. Thanks for sharing.
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