If a stranger comes to your door saying they are having an emergency and need to use your phone, do not let them into your home. Instead, offer to dial the phone for them.
Walk with your head up and a purpose in your stride. Looking down at your phone while walking makes you vulnerable. Stay aware of your surroundings.
Have your keys in your hand before you exit any building or your car. You don't want to be fumbling around in your purse or pockets for them. Always be aware of your surroundings.
Make eye contact. Predators like easy prey. If you walk confidently, with your head up, watching your environment you become less attractive as a target.
Backing up is not a good strategy. You're more stable going forward or sideways. For every two feet that you move backwards your attacker can move forward three feet.
Anything and everything can become a weapon that you can use if you are in a situation where you are forced to defend yourself. Pens, keys, your purse, high heeled shoes, even your elbow. You are not defenseless.
If someone is holding you up for your purse, wallet or keys, don't just hand it to them. Toss the purse, wallet or keys away from you and run in the opposite direction. Remember that stuff can be replaced, but you can't!
Predators watch their prey before attacking. Be aware of who is watching you. If you notice someone watching you, make eye contact so that they know that you know they are watching.
Be careful with what you post on social media. Posting things like "my husband is out of town for two weeks" can put you at risk and make you a target.
If you park your car in your garage and have an automatic garage door opener, remain in the car with the doors locked until the garage door is fully closed. If you enter your home through the garage, but park outside, make sure that the garage door is fully closed before you enter your home. It's very easy for an intruder to roll under the door as it is closing. When you are leaving, make sure that the garage door is fully closed before driving away. Also lock the door in your home that leads to the garage.
Situational awareness: Think of situational awareness in terms of colors. White: Unaware. You should only be unaware when you are sleeping. Yellow: Aware. This is where you should live your life. You are aware of your environment and the people around you. What are they wearing? How tall are they? What do they have in their hands? When you enter a building, store or restaurant scan for what's going on and identify the exits. Yellow should be your normal. Orange: Alert. You become aware of potential danger. Something is not normal for the environment. It could be someone yelling, the sound of running, someone looking at you or approaching you in a threatening manner. It could also be your gut level response that something isn't right. Red: Alarm. The threat has materialized and you respond. This could include yelling, running away, pulling out your self defense tool, such as pepper spray, taser or your gun. In the Red zone, you are initiating the response that you have prepared for by practicing your what-if scenarios. Whatever self defense tool you use, practice with it regularly.
If you unlock your car with a remote, only click it once to open the driver's door. A second click opens the passenger doors allowing an assailant access. Once inside your vehicle, lock the doors and immediately lock your vehicle once you exit.
Always, I repeat always, trust your gut instinct. If something feels wrong or off to you, it probably is. This goes for situations, locations and people. Worry less about hurting someone's feelings or being embarrassed and more about being safe.
Be Your Own Guardian Angel