Self-defense can be overwhelming. There are many aspects, lots of information (good and bad), and often times confusion around what works and what doesn’t. This alone makes it hard to know where to begin in regard to training and making self-defense habitual. Here are three things you can do right now to improve your safety.
- Make Yourself a Hard Target: The key is to make yourself an unattractive target. When a criminal is out looking for an easy target, make yourself appear prickly and not worth approaching. Be alert, look like you belong, and move with purpose. If you see a person that alarms you, make eye contact just long enough to demonstrate that you are aware and quickly vacate the area.
- Always Have Good Situational Awareness: Constantly be aware of your surroundings, know your exits, and know what is out of place. Know what pre-attack indicators are and how to spot and avoid trouble before it turns into a physical encounter. Always leave yourself an out. Spot trouble early so you have time to take advantage of an avenue of escape.
- Deny Criminals the Opportunity: Always keep the crime triangle in your mind. Never forget that three components must be present for a crime to take place; desire, ability and opportunity. Opportunity is the only component you control. Analyze your actions. Do you put yourself in situations that make you vulnerable? Do you get gas after dark? Do you visit isolated ATM machines? Do you jog alone on remote trails while wearing earphones? Proactively strive to deny aggressors the opportunity to do harm.
I think you will find if you allocate just a little bit of time and effort to improving your safety, the payoff will be substantial. Use the three items above as a starting point to making personal protection an integral part of your life.