It’s a New Year, GFB Friends! What Will You Do to Live Your Best Life in 2014?

Holla, 2014!!!!!!!!!!!

Sassy Self-Defense Guide -- UPDATED for 2014!

Have you set any New Year’s Resolutions?  We really hope part of your 2014 goals will be to continue your self-defense education, or if you haven’t taken a class yet, to sign up.  We are here to help!  This summer several of the GFB girls will be joining Bill Kipp and Debra Thomas of FAST Defense for a great weekend training in Colorado.  More info here.

Wherever you live, we have a class for you.  Download our Sassy Self-Defense Guide for an updated list of IMPACT and FAST courses nationwide.  So many of us wait until we experience a tragedy to take that first step.  Be proactive and remember that an education in self-defense isn’t just about fighting.  It’s so much more than that.  Knowing and being empowered to protect yourself can change everything about the way you view your world, the choices you make, the relationships you enter into, everything . . .  Ladies, you ARE your own badass.  You ARE your own best protector.  You don’t have to live in fear another day.  So, download the guide and join us in Colorado next summer or join any of these wonderful instructors listed in our guide and take that first step toward living your best life.  It’s a lot more important than losing five pounds and a heck of a lot more fun!  You ARE Worth Fighting For!

Best Wishes For an Awesome 2014 from the GFB Team!2013 academy GFB

This One’s for the Boys

Sitting in my improv class at the Chicago iO Theater, one of my peers found himself in a scene about manicures. Seeing as how he honestly didn’t know what cuticles were, I figured this was going to get good. He made a comment about how fun it would be to get a facial shave from a barber shop, old-school style. “I figured real men shave with a straight razor.” I laughed.

First, I know no one who gets this kind of treatment; all of my man friends continue to cut themselves with a protected Bic razor, let alone an open blade. Second, because I love the term “real men.”

Typically, “real men” are imagined as dudes ripping meat off of a huge turkey leg with their teeth,  speaking in a deep, sultry voice, built like The Rock, break boards for fun, sport a chest full of hair (button it up, Chi-town),  chop wood daily and yes, shave with a pocket knife.

Thankfully, we outgrew the cavemen era and this is a bunch of crap. Although any intelligent human being knows this, it became crystal clear to me a couple weekends ago as I furthered my GFB training with self defense guru Bill Kipp and his FAST DEFENSE team, the leaders in adrenal stress scenario based training.

The roll-call included Veterans, Air Force, police force, SWAT team members, ninjas (literally), black belts of all kinds of martial arts, and arguably THE best in self-defense. Yet upon exiting the toughest training I’d ever been through, “The Gauntlet” (that’s a whole other blog), each time I was greeted by these friendly giants with a huge embrace, as was every other woman at the training. Not to mention, the men who were taking my knee to the face multiple times would approach me after with compliments and encouragement.

Not once but twice did a few of these men bring me to tears with in-depth conversations of personal stories, faith and family. I was in awe of these gentle giants. Almost all heroes of some kind of war or an expert in martial arts, yet the kindest of hearts you can imagine.

At the end of the weekend during our reflection time, one of the other women who volunteers for GFB and is an active feminist shared that these tough guys are the ones who define a “real man.” My eyes began to swell because her words rang so true. These men, along side brave women, are our country’s protectors whether through education, across seas or in our backyard. Even though they may be big, burly and carry a mean punch, this is not what makes them real men.

No, it is when the walls are down that we see the true hero.  All of these wonderful men, and the men and women who raised them, from self-defense educators, to veterans, to school teachers, to policemen, to dads,  brothers, grandpas, best friends, to mentors, to heroes, to the social workers, to the volunteers, and GFB supporters, this one’s for you:

 “The bravest are the most tender; the loving are the daring.” – Bayard Taylor, poet.

Thank you to all the real men for leading this country and supporting women not with your pocket-knife-shave or macho puffed out chest, but with your heart.

Don’t ever stop!

Bill Kipp is founder of FAST Defense Inc., one of the world’s leading self-defense systems and was named “Best Women’s Program” by Black Belt Magazine.

 

Note from Erin: When Bill and I hang out, it’s usually at his creepy barn in Colorado and he’s attacking me. In response I’m full-contact kicking him in the groin and punching him in the face. And he’s one of my best buddies…cuz isn’t that what friends do? Seriously, Bill is my fightin’ guru. Much love and appreciation to him and his gorgeous partner-in-crime Debra for all they have done for the GFB team.