The Gift of Fear
by Gavin de Becker

This month’s book recommendation is something a little different.

Anyone who listens to our show or podcast knows I am endlessly curious about human behaviour. And I firmly believe that kind of learning can come from any discipline.

Gavin de Becker is widely regarded as the foremost expert on the protection of public figures. He is the founder and chairman of Gavin de Becker and Associates and his company is hired to protect people or track down stalkers and people who harass or threaten. His firm has analyzed thousands of cases- most first-hand – and has systemized the elements of threat and fear.

de Becker’s expertise on the prediction and prevention of violence is remarkably insightful as a result. This entire book is all about how to stay safe – and more to the point – how to listen to your intuition.

I am particularly interested in intuition. One of my oft-mentioned mantras is to “Love, honour and obey your gut feelings.” de Becker agrees fully. He says “Intuition is the journey from A to Z without stopping at any other letter along the way.”

When it comes to danger, intuition sounds an early warning bell. de Becker says the brain sees long before the eyes do. Yet so many people don’t have faith in their instincts. We worship hindsight but distrust foresight. We let politeness get in the way of self-preservation, or we let an attractive face or a helping hand override our instincts that something doesn’t feel right. All of which means when danger is imminent, we often ignore the signs.

This book teaches us to be aware. de Becker emphasizes his insights with actual stories and cases his firm has handled. And may I say, this is a particularly important book for women to read.

As de Becker says so eloquently, “Listen to the quiet wind chime of your intuition.”

This book is a remarkable study of human nature.