7 Secrets to No-Fail Personal Protection

By Charles Hopkins Published 05/27/2007 | Security and Safety

Personal protection is an essential skill for every person, regardless of gender, age, or any other factor. Crime is a way of life in today's world, no matter where you live. Recent statistics tell us that 5.2 million violent crimes were committed in the US in one year.

But does that mean you need to live in fear? Definitely not! With a little practice, you can make changes in how you think and act that will make it highly unlikely you'll ever become a victim of crime. But, if the worst happens, then you also need to know how to survive it.

This article will teach you 7 "secrets" you can begin implementing immediately to increase your level of personal protection. The main objective is to avoid acting like a victim. Become a warrior and ensure your survival, no matter what!

1. Ratchet up your level of awareness.

This is the single most important skill in personal protection. When you are totally aware of everything that is going on around you, you are a less inviting target and you will also be poised to avoid any violence that does come your way.

So, as you walk to your car or down the street, keep your head up, look from side to side and behind you, and notice what's happening. It's not a good idea to wear headphones or be talking on the cell phone and lose your awareness of your surroundings.

Also, if you are worried, depressed, or otherwise engaged in mental debate, you decrease your awareness. Walk toward traffic, not with it, so no one can sneak up on you. Similarly, walk in the middle of the sidewalk, well away from dark doorways and alleys.

2. Plan for violence.

No, this doesn't mean living in fear. It just means you get realistic about the possibility of crime coming your way, and you plan for it. Think about what might happen, and then figure out your strategies for getting out of situations.

What will you do if a stranger approaches and offers to carry your shopping bags to your car for you? What if a date wants to take things further than you do and begins to insist?

We all tend to make better decisions and respond more positively when we anticipate a situation, rather than reacting out of surprise.

3. Don't act like a victim.

You want to project an aura of confidence and belief in your own strength. If you shuffle along, head down, glancing fearfully up through your eyelashes, clutching your purse to your chest, you give off the victim vibe and criminals WILL pick up on it.

So, instead, increase your personal protection by striding strongly along at a brisk pace, making eye contact with those around you, looking straight ahead, but also being aware of what's to either side and behind you. Make yourself a "hard" target, not an easy one.

4. Be aware of common ruses criminals use to get close.

If a stranger asks for directions or offers to carry your bags, be suspicious. This might seem overly cautious, but better to rebuff a nice person, than end up robbed or dead. If a stranger approaches you, look them in the eye, so they know you'll be able to identify them down the road.

Keep your hands free, so you're ready to defend yourself if needed. And, don't let them shift your awareness. Criminals often work in pairs, with one distracting you, while the other approaches from the side or rear to attack. Don't let that happen.

5. Heed your intuition.

If you get into a situation and something doesn't "feel right," don't ignore your gut. Your subconscious is probably picking up some subtle cues you haven't quite become aware of yet. Take immediate steps to improve your level of safety and personal protection.

6. If you are attacked, become a warrior.

Resistance is the key to your personal protection here. Do not believe that if you go along with the criminal, you'll escape unhurt. Don't go anywhere with him; don't allow him to do anything to you.

Yes, resistance might result in you getting injured. But any injury is preferable to death, and death is a likely result in any violent confrontation, no matter how cooperative you are. If you can, strike first.

One of the most effective methods is a heel of the palm strike against the criminal's nose or chin. This also gets your fingers on his face, where you can follow up with an eye poke or scratching, which are also effective. Women wearing heels or anyone wearing heavy boots can also stomp down on the criminal's instep.

Your main goal is to disable him long enough to run away to a safer area.

7. Never give up.

Perseverance is the key to your survival. No matter what happens, keep trying to get away and to end the confrontation. This may seem obvious, but it's not over until you're dead. So don't lose hope, and just keep using every tool in your arsenal until you overcome the situation.

The bottom line is that most criminals are lazy and will choose the "easy" victim every time. Make it as hard on them as possible, and you improve your level of personal protection a thousand fold.