Here are three survival (security) tips that are free, and won’t cost you anything. There is a caveat though, that is you may need to force a slight change in your behavior and habits.
In today’s world of increasing economic woes, more individuals are turning towards criminal behavior as they become angrier, looking for someone to blame, and may be downright desperate. You, as a ‘normal’ person, may be walking among them from time to time and you don’t even know it or recognize it.
To a large extent, the key to avoid being victimized is to simply be aware. Awareness consciously (and subconsciously) changes your own behavior such that you will be more likely to avoid dangerous situations that could escalate into violence.
Define ‘awareness’ in the context of your self-security:
- Know what is happening or has happened in your field of travel
- Look around you (and behind you) while moving (walking, driving, etc) outside your home
- Make eye contact while scanning in crowded public places
Know what is happening or has happened in your field of travel
Whether by paying attention to the news or ‘hearsay’, understand the history of the area you are about to travel in. Most people over time will come to understand where the ‘bad’ areas are in their local region – areas especially vulnerable to crime.
If you are new to the area, or if traveling outside your own area, make an effort to discover where these ‘bad’ areas are. A great tool to look for crime reports is on CrimeReports.com, which shows maps dotted with crime reports in Canada, the U.S., and the UK.
(No, they’re not an advertiser… it’s just a really useful tool)
Look around you (and behind you) while traveling
This simple behavior is more effective than you may imagine. Reason being, is that so many people do not do this, are ignorant to their surroundings, and are the first to become victims. Predators look for the weaker prey. Someone who is looking down, or who appears to be in their own little world, are prime targets for criminals.
Instead, scan around you from time to time, with your head up straight, as you walk with purpose – shoulders back, and confident. Not only might you avoid an unruly-looking gang of troublemakers, but they might avoid targeting YOU.
Make eye contact while scanning in crowded public places
Making purposeful, but quick eye contact is another very effective deterrent to a criminal. Here’s the reason… Most people purposely avoid eye contact in public places. They want to remain in their own little world, and by looking down or avoiding eye contact, they are convinced that they will remain in that cocoon. The reality is that they are entirely wrong.
Sure, that type of behavior may avoid unwanted conversation that otherwise might initiate from a stranger, but that’s about it… By occasionally scanning and making quick eye contact with others, tells any potential criminal that you are not afraid. ‘Quick’ eye contact simply means don’t stare. Staring will provoke a stranger.
Is this type of behavior simply a bunch of paranoia? Do you have to walk around being paranoid to avoid being in the wrong place at the wrong time? No, of course not. Granted, for some people, learning to do these simple things will feel uncomfortable at first – and they may feel as though they are being paranoid. However, after awhile, this will become part of you, just like being able to carry on a conversation with someone while driving a car. It’s no big deal…
Bolster some confidence while you’re out and about. It may unknowingly ward off a pick-pocket, purse-snatcher, or worse criminal, without you even knowing it happened!
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