Get Off the X

The Seminar.

CIA Tradecraft to Conquer What’s Holding You Back©

This training is designed around the well-known security concept, “Get Off the X,” a phrase designed to help people react appropriately when their life is on the line, to move away from danger instead of freezing when under attack. Michele has taken this concept and applied it to a better understanding of how to get “unstuck” in one’s personal life and career in Chapter 8 of her book Breaking Cover.

This approximately 2-2.5 hour seminar transforms trainees into stealthy operational specialists as they use intelligence tradecraft to plot their way off the X. This training incorporates classroom instruction, small group sessions, and personal reflection time.

This training can be designed to fit your organization’s needs. Please contact Michele for more information on how this curriculum can be tailored to your specific industry, group, or budget requirements.
Classroom with tables and chairs, breakout spaces, whiteboard, notepads and pens.
  • Determine Whether You Are Stuck on the X
    Understand what it means to be stuck, frozen, or unable to move forward.
  • Understand Different Types of Obstacles
    Understand the difference between mental obstacles and circumstantial obstacles. Transform your understanding of concepts such as struggle, perseverance, grit, and delayed gratification.
  • Summon the Courage to Challenge Yourself or Your Situation
    Be willing and courageous to ask hard questions to challenge your personal life, career and/or your job with questions like the following:

    1. “Is my workplace behavior or are my career decisions stuck on the X?”
    2. “Are any of the company’s operational approaches, equipment, products, processes, partnerships, policies, or procedures, etc. stuck on the X?”
    3. If so, “What can I do to change the situation, solve a problem, improve things, or move myself and those around me forward?”

Learn how to challenge your concept of what’s working (and what isn’t working as well as it could be), in order to take the next steps and envision ways to solve those problems.

  • Diagnose Internal and External Obstacles
    Identify what assumptions or mind-blocks are holding you or your colleagues back; Adopt the proper mindset needed to get off the X. Then, identify any external obstacles.
  • Learn GOTX Tradecraft and Develop an Operational Plan (X/Ops) to Move Yourself Forward
  • Discover the Power of Collaboration
    Learn how to strategize X/Ops as a part of a team; generate additional ideas to move your initiatives forward.
  • Become an Agent of Influence
    Master the concepts and then pass them on. Be sensitive to others and aware whether anyone in your orbit may be stuck on the X. Help/encourage them to plot their way off the X in a way that’s exciting, builds teamwork, encourages collaboration, and alters (liberates) mindsets, so that your employees have the motivation and confidence to do this on their own, as needed.

Special Introductory Cost: $10,000 (based on number of participants, location of training, and length of seminar)

*The contents of this training have been reviewed by the Central Intelligence Agency’s Publication Review Board.


What if you could determine if a person is lying to you or telling the truth? What if you had the skills to identify the best employees, vendors, business associates, or life partners? We became experts at vetting people and information in the CIA, and now, we’re passing on those secrets. We’ve cracked the code, so you don’t have to!


  • How to “Read” Anyone (A Crash Course in Understanding and Interpreting Nonverbal Behavior)
  • Teamwork: Lessons From CIA Ops for Sports Teams
  • Vetting Skills: How to Vet Potential Hires and Sports Recruits
  • Elicitation Skills: How to Elicit Helpful Details from Potential Security Threats

  • Corporate Counterintelligence Training and Awareness

  • How to Spot a Liar (Human-Focused Fraud Awareness and Training)

  • Chinese Intel Operations in Florida

  • Know Before You Go: Preparing for a Business Trip to Saudi Arabia

For a dose of inspiration or to learn about Michele’s upcoming projects and products….