You hold in your hands an owners manual for the human mind. Sifu Singh has distilled his years of training, observing, and living a reflective life into a guide that will help you tame your restless, reckless, and counterproductive thoughts and impulses and find an inner calm that leads to success in any endeavor.
I first met Sifu Singh in 2009 at a conference for law enforcement instructors. At the time I was a lead combatives instructor for the U.S. Secret Service while also serving as a reserve Marine Officer attached to the Marine Corps Martial Arts Center of Excellence. My goal, as was the goal of many other attendees, was to find new or better techniques to introduce to my organizations’ training programs.
I must admit that I signed up for Singh’s day of instruction mostly out of a sense of curiosity and novelty. Every martial artist is familiar with Bruce Lee and the martial art he founded, Jeet Kune Do, but here was a chance to train with an instructor with a direct lineage to the master.
I was thrilled to discover that Sifu Singh has continued the work of Bruce Lee in creating an eclectic martial art that seamlessly blends traditional hard and soft Chinese styles with Southeast Asian stick and edged weapon arts alongside Western wrestling and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. I did indeed take away many skills that day that greatly furthered my own training and the programs I deliver to law enforcement officers and military personnel.
As impressive as Sifu Singh’s mastery of physical combative skills was, there was something else that captivated me. Sifu Singh was subtly integrating mental training into the physical training in a way I had never seen before. Each drill blended breathing techniques, vocalizations, mental focus, and rapid shifts of physical tempo and emotional intensity in with the actual physical skills being trained.
For years I have immersed myself in research on tactical performance, combat ethics, and use-of-force training and I have come to the conclusion that one of the keys to helping police officers, soldiers, sailors, marines and airmen become effective and ethical guardians of our nation and our constitution was to be found training arousal control—the ability to control one’s emotional state. To this day I have yet to find another teacher or program that blends this skill with physical combat skills at anywhere close to the extent that Sifu Singh does.
Over our many training sessions and discussions since that day in Chicago I have learned that what I first believed were keys to surviving a violent encounter were in fact keys to thriving in life. This book is as applicable to a soldier or police officer as it is to an attorney, a teacher, a physician, or a software engineer. Our journey to become better people never ends: this book provides us with enough guidance for an entire life well lived.