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Losing the adrenaline rush after an “incident”

I don’t know if this has been approached yet but could anyone tell me how to quickly flush a couple of gallons of adrenaline out of your system in a hurry? I was involved in a shoot / no-shoot situation which turned out to be a case of mistaken identity. It was the first time I’d pulled on anyone and was relieved when the whole 30 second event was over. However my internal reaction to the event was practically embarrassing as whatever rush I was experiencing continued long after any potential threat disappeared. Is there a secret to calming your body so you don’t look as if you have a degenerative disease?
 

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That is going to be differant for you then me. My personal trick is to just start walking, or sit down and meditate. Don't focus on anything just sit down and let your mind spool down. The walking thing just walk till you're calm.
 

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It’s that very event that I fear the most. When I was a LEO, drawing down on people was very common and there was little risk of repercussions back then. Today, that instinct is still ingrained in my brain and as such, I go to extreme efforts so as not to make that mistake.

Anyway, when I rarely have that adrenalin rush, it typically last a few seconds and tapers down rather quickly to just excitement. Personally, I don’t think any of us can control the initial release since our reactions are purely autonomic. The aftermath is just plain old fashion fear, which may last several minutes.
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Try tactical breathing. Get that heart rate down. You should read On Combat by Col. Dave Grossman. Do something physically strenuous like running, working out, sparring, ect. Getting that adrenaline out of your system by using it is a way. You can't do this all the time though. Just know that after the dump, you had better be prepared for a body dump. You'll feel exhausted and lethargic.
 

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God knows, I would have walked if I could, only right after my legs felt like they belonged to someone else. I considered making coffee until I realized my hands were shaking so bad getting the lid off the coffee can was going to be problematic. During "the moment", we're capable of so much and yet our (my) system shuts down until long after the crisis is over. It would just be nice to acquire a little immunity from that type of reaction.
 

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Slow deliberate deep breaths and movement...focus on something pleasant (good luck).
 

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God knows, I would have walked if I could, only right after my legs felt like they belonged to someone else. I considered making coffee until I realized my hands were shaking so bad getting the lid off the coffee can was going to be problematic. During "the moment", we're capable of so much and yet our (my) system shuts down until long after the crisis is over. It would just be nice to acquire a little immunity from that type of reaction.
:25a:
That little type of reaction is what keeps folks alive. It's the body's response to a situation such that the brain knows you're going to need every ounce of oomph it can get out of your body and isn't normally available, so it goes overdrive. It's like throwing a set of twin turbos on a rice-mobile at full boost. You know you don't always need it, but when you need to get that little bugger off the line and get up and go, it's real nice to have :yup:.

Now...if you said it would be nice to "control" that little type of reaction and call it up at will, we'd be having a completely different conversation:diablotin:

edit...btw...don't get rid of it...USE IT! Go hit the weights ;-p
 

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You've been given some good advice, but maybe not what you're looking for.

I've found that the more stressful situations I've been in the easier they are do deal with, as you have more in your "memory bank" to draw from. I seldom shake anymore in real dangerous situations, and I started with vomiting right after a dangerous situation while ******* on myself during the situation.

If you live through the ordeals, and that's the hard part, you get better at dealing with them. I often find myself tactical breathing just prior to an event. If not do so prior, then during and after. It's almost like "autopilot" for me. To me, breathing is the key.

You will have to fight some of the natural body inclinations, such as talking. It can be done, but at a psychological cost to you. I can often appear stoic, cold and callous. These are survival mechanisms for me, aftermath survival. My natural instinct is to let my mouth run away with itself, and this is not good for the courtroom survival.

There are two things you need to survive. The first is the actual physical encounter. The second is the mental masturbatory legal encounter. Surviving one is not indicative of surviving the other, and they are often at odds with each other.

If I can be of any help feel free to PM me and I will do what I can to help.

Biker
 

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I've found that the more stressful situations I've been in the easier they are do deal with, as you have more in your "memory bank" to draw from.
Very true, the more often you have the rush the easier it is to control the aftermath.

Your background also has a lot to do with it. I grew up fighting on the week ends, it just seemed the things that country boys did back then, two combat tours in the late 60's and worked as a bouncer in the enlisted club when I was stateside. ( USMC 1961-1971)

I was assigned as the "bar fight " response car when I was a LEO in the mid
70's. The more bar fights I responded to the less of an adrenaline rush it was. It was the same with a high speed vehicle pursuit. You get to a point where you become less excitable and more of an automated response.

The new guys were easy to ID. they talked a lot, seemed/were hyper and wanted to re-live the experience, over and over. When they let go, they were exhausted.

If you have to talk with someone about it make sure it is someone you can trust your life with or it may come back to haunt you.
 

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...You will have to fight some of the natural body inclinations, such as talking. It can be done, but at a psychological cost to you. I can often appear stoic, cold and callous. These are survival mechanisms for me, aftermath survival. My natural instinct is to let my mouth run away with itself, and this is not good for the courtroom survival.
+1 on that Biker... I too get the urge to run my mouth. On the job as a medic, after a dangerously close call or one in which a large amount of adrenaline has been expended, it's not as potentially dangerous, liability wise as it is with a deadly force encounter. I do have to guard against it.

Lot's of other good advice posted here. I prefer to be by myself for about an hour if possible. Also, what helps on the job, if I have my iPod handy I will listen to some calming music with the ear buds on. It's kind of like being in a sound booth and helps me isolate and put things into perspective and help me focus on things that helped me survive so I don't lose it in the future.

I am also a big supporter of Survival Breathing... It has worked for me. I found myself doing it subconsciously before I learned what it was. Since then, I've learned the proper way to do it in order to get maximum benefit.
 

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You will have to fight some of the natural body inclinations, such as talking. It can be done, but at a psychological cost to you. I can often appear stoic, cold and callous. These are survival mechanisms for me, aftermath survival. My natural instinct is to let my mouth run away with itself, and this is not good for the courtroom survival.
It is not good to hold it in.
It is perfectly normal to become mentally or physically agitated after a long "fight or flight" adrenaline-raising experience. Discussing your frustrations and concerns with "trusted friends or family members" may also help you calm down from a stressful experience. Holding in your emotions, especially anger and frustration, can make it even more difficult to calm down. Once the problem or problems are put out on the table for discussion, they may not seem quite as insurmountable or hopeless. With time you can become complacent, this may not be a good action ethier.
 

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I used a firearm in self defense 11 years ago and went to a therapist
to help me deal with the emotional aftermath of the situation.
You have to watch out for and deal with normal emotions
after dealing with high stress danger situations.
One of the biggest emotions among people who have been in your
type of situation is depression which usually develops after the other
feelings have passed. I agree that talking with someone about the situation
probably even a therapist would be a huge benefit to you. It will really help you to better understand all aspects of the emotions and feelings you are dealing with especially after a situation like this. good luck
 

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Right after the situation, breathe, and be prepared for your body to crash after the adrenaline dump is done.

Talking about it with those you trust (one of the advantages of being in a cohesive combat unit), is also good to help manage the aftermath
 

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Imagining the situation, I'm thinking there was talking after the event. If there is an esculated physical event, my verbal skills are mostly agressive or passive, but all my life, even as a child in a fight, I've programmed myself to say nothing after the conflict until I collect my thoughts. I've found when pressured to talk at that moment, when I'm trying not to talk, conversation feels adversarial, and since the adrenaline is already in the system, I have a hard time shaking it.

People may have been putting on presure to talk when the thing you needed was calming inner dialog (or many other names it can be called).
 

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You should read On Combat by Col. Dave Grossman
A much better read would be ON KILLING by the same author. If you ever get to sit in on any of his lequtures it is a must.
 

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Excellent points Thanis...exactly what I was thinking reading through this thread...my body want to be chatty after an adrenaline dump (on top of the vibrating ankles I get), which is NOT what you're likely to want in a shoot/no shoot situation.

I think planning ahead (such as being discussed here), recognizing what's going on, and recalling your decisions made when your brain was in better control, all go a long way towards a smarter reaction and handling of the dump...especially since you may not have the option of physically working it off.
 

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Whiskey....


Just kidding.

Everyone is different, and everyone here is giving good advice. So I will just tell you what I do.

Go for a long scenic drive, with good loud music, and my favorite soda or water. It gives me time to quiet my mind, and collect my thoughts.
 

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I generally shake uncontrollably for 5 minutes and then throw up.........then I'm good to go...........:afraid::tongue:
 

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Controlled breathing...takes a couple of minutes to tranquilize oneself...used in Yoga, also...breathe in fully, exhale fully, breathe in for a count of 8, hold for a count of eight, breath out for a count of eight, hold for a count of eight, breath in for a count of 8...do this two to three times and you're tranquil, calm, rational, in control...assuming, of course, that there are not other threats. One can do this upon arrival at a scene, also, or before going into an extremely hostile situation...clears the head, enables focus...
 

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I remember one time as an LEO after a tense situation where guns were drawn and finger was on trigger but no shots were fired,as I sat in my car writing the report,my right leg started shaking uncontrollably for about a minute,after that I was ok and could drive safely
 
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