Keep In Mind / Keep in Memory (KIM) from a Situational Awareness Perspective
The KIM’s game is a game of memory and observation. Situational Awareness is knowing who’s around you and what’s going on around you. The KIM’s game has been played by Scouts and Military alike.
Did you know the Navy Seals goes through a series of drills called Keep in Memory during sniper school? Often, they only get a brief look at the situation. Wouldn’t you love to train line a Navy Seal? Playing the KIM’s game is one way you can, and what about being uber bad ass and going to sniper school?! Well ladies, (sorry fellas) as a Member of A Girl and A Gun, that’s actually one of our annual girl's getaway excursions.
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The KIM’s game helps you to develop the abilities to remember and observe a variety of objects, you look at the items for a couple of minutes, they are taken away and then you are to recall what the items were, as you improve your memory skills add more items and allow less time to observe. Other ways to play the game is while out an about with a friend or glance at a person and see if you can recall how they look or the clothes they are wearing, identify locations that can be considered cover (something you can hide behind to protect you from bullets) or concealment (something that keeps you from being seen but won’t keep a round from hitting you).
Now that you have started to increase your memory let’s talk about situational awareness which again is knowing what’s going on in your environment.
Growing up in Los Angeles situational awareness was bred into me except the words situational awareness were not used, just pay attention and trust your gut which I still do to this day.
“Paying attention buys you time and time buys you options”
Should you find yourself in a bad situation paying attention and noticing what’s going on give you time to plan your next steps. Our knowledge skills and experience will help us to understand what’s going on around us. Our situational awareness is only as good as our perception on reading the situation, if you're not 100% sure of what’s going on you would want to Observe, Orient, Decide then Act also known as the acronym OODA loop is a 4-step decision making cycle developed by United States Air Force Colonel John Boyd. This cycle helps you to put things in context and be able to make changes as more information becomes available.
O - Observe, step one is where you a paying attention to what’s going on around you and how it’s affecting you.
O – Orient, the most important step in the process, where you would exercise deductive reasoning to make sure you have a complete understanding of the situation. Considerations are biases, culture, emotions and how you were raised.
“Orientation isn’t just a state you’re in; it’s a process. You’re always orienting.” –John Boyd
D – Decide, step 3 is exactly as it sounds, it’s decision-making time and considering all of the possible outcomes of your decisions
A – Act, based on the information from steps 1, 2, and 3 it’s time to act on the information you’ve obtained. Your action could be simply to leave the area. Your body’s natural response to stress may dictate your actions (fight, flight, freeze, fawn)
These steps of the OODA loop are processed hundreds of times each day and now that you are more aware you can practice and become faster but also know that there are things that can impact the process such as fatigue.
If you legally carry a concealed firearm for self-protection, carry every day, everywhere! Know the laws of your municipalities (city, township, county, state, etc…)
Bad actors don’t necessarily announce their plans to do bad things and that gives them the advantage, did you know that bad people study and plan for violent attacks? Shouldn’t you study and plan to protect the lives of you and your family??? After all this is a personal protection blog, empower yourselves by learning, growing and evolving into your own immediate responder.