Saw Y. C. Naw wrote:
So I guess the question is: How would a martial artist learn to avoid reacting naturally in social situations, while maintaining awareness and adaptability at the same time?
I mean, the loved ones and the children in your family could "play" with you in this way at any time. Is the only solution to tell everyone around you "DON'T ever surprise me kids, because I can be bad. Very bad."
LOL ... Early on that may be part of it. I'l tell a boring story about my childhood that may help some or may just be better than a sleeping pill for you. LOL
My father was a Marine and I grew up around guns long before I ever learned to "fight". I was always taught never ever point a gun at something you didn't want to kill. That mindset has stuck with me through my martial arts training as well. When confronted/surprised/etc as my body starts to react naturally I always try to focus on what I call "target identification". I am usually already early into technique by the time my brain registers that my "target" is my wife, step-daughter, or best friend that just loves to push my buttons.
The only time I ever actually was attacked on the street I had been studying TKD for 5 years and was preparing for my Shodan test. I was jumped from behind and that natual reaction took over and the guy was unconsious in about 2 seconds. I realized he was out as he was falling, and to be honest, it scared the crap out of me.
The point of all of my rambling I guess is to be acutely aware that your training can inflict serious injury and is a gift not to be taken lightly.
Just like your reflexes and techniques will sharpen over time, so will your control and "target identification" skills. Always be aware that you can injure someone and you will be less likely to actually do it unless you are left no other choice.