Awareness is Self Defense
Awareness should be practiced daily to avoid unnecessary trouble.
Mobile Device Use
Awareness is self defense. One of the simplest things you can do, to improve your awareness, is to quit putting your head down and staring at your cell phone or other mobile device! You have no idea what is going on around you when you are eyes are glued to that device.
If you have to stop to use your phone, or other tasks, put your back up against a wall. This will keep people from walking up behind you, and from snooping what you’re doing. All of us have to take a phone call from time to time, but be aware that you may be more vulnerable when you are distracted by your phone.
Check your 6 (and other vectors)
You need to be looking around all the time. You should do it so often, that it becomes a habit.
When you are walking, look over your shoulder to see what’s behind you. If you watch most people, this isn’t normal behavior. All animals in the wild do this. Watch the birds as they feed. They keep poking their heads up and looking around. This is because they don’t want to be eaten.
When you are walking and want to change direction or when turning a corner, look behind you, look forward, and then look behind again as you move on.
Every time you go through a doorway, look to the left and right, then left and right again.
When you are crossing through a parking lot, carry a bright flashlight in your pocket or hand, walk widely around cars and look between them. I’ve seen many cases where an assailant has leapt out from between parked cars to make their attack.
If you are at a store, shop or other location and don’t feel comfortable walking to your car alone, FOR ANY REASON, have someone from the store escort you. They do this all the time, and they understand. I’ve even see a lady escorted to her car from the Post Office.
If there is a suspicious vehicle parked next to yours, turn about go back into the store, and get an escort to your car.
If your gut says “Danger”, or something isn’t right, get an escort to your car. Never ever skip this step. Trust me. Do not take chances or think you’re being paranoid.
Always walk a bit faster than the rest of the crowd and the people around you. As you move along, your view of things will constantly change.
If you walk at the same pace as everyone else in the crowd, your view doesn’t change. You will never notice the person, who is a couple people behind you and is pacing you, who may be waiting for the opportunity to attack you.
Moving faster than the crowd gives you different views as people move. A person, who is following you, will eventually be exposed through any gaps in the crowd.
Walking fast makes it harder for someone to walk up behind you. It’s hard to be quiet, when running up behind someone.
Its hard for people to not to stick out when they are trying to follow you, if you do this right.
If you are chatting with a friend or associate in a crowded place, try to stand facing them directly. That way you can watch their back and they can watch yours. This works pretty well when both of you are being aware, not as good when you’re talking with someone who never pays attention.
Building, Stores, Shops and Restaurants
Any time you go into a new place, look for and identify the exits. If something happens, everyone else will bum rush the front door.
This means that you’ll have a better and clearer line of escape in the event of emergency, like a fire. This will help you from avoid the human stampede. A nice addition to this is, if anyone is out to get you, they’ll expect you to go out the front door. Knowing where the exits are gives you optons and can save you valuable time.
When you sit down, pick a good seat, where you can see who’s coming and going. If at all possible, keep your back to a corner, or sit facing the main entrance. Most bad guys will enter through the main entrance, just like everyone else.
If you noticed someone with a rifle was coming in to rob the place, and you already knew where the exits were; you would have choices and may simply be able to make a quick exit, before the mayhem starts.
Something Isn’t Right
Always look for things that seem out of place. Try to determine what’s normal in that area and then see what sticks out.
An obvious example may be a guy with a Trench Coat on in the high temperatures of summer. There might indicate that something is wrong there.
Another indicator can be the presence or lack of people.
In some regions or neighborhoods, the locals somehow know when something bad is going to happen. When they know that trouble will be afoot, they leave. If there are a lot of people around then they all start disappearing, you may have a problem and should leave that scene immediately.
For example, if you walked into a convenience store, and the clerk wasn’t behind the counter, was the place getting robbed? You need to be aware if someone is missing, or isn’t where they should be.
Many things won’t be that obvious, but if you are aware you just might spot a bad guy in a crowd. Awareness is self defense!