This world can be a scary place. The news is full of stories that tell us all of the awful things that can happen in the blink of an eye. I try not to live in fear but, at the same time, I don’t want to be naïve, either. It’s always best to be as prepared as we can possibly be for any situation. That’s why, a while back, I took a street tactical self defense class with an instructor who is ex-law enforcement and military.
The lessons I learned from my instructor were invaluable. So today, I’m sharing with you self defense tips and tricks for moms and kids right from my Self Defense Instructor. These are practical steps you can follow to keep yourself and your children safe. He and I brainstormed these ideas together with moms just like you in mind. Because I know how important it is to keep myself and my kids safe and I know you do, too.
These are the Three A’s of Self Defense: Awareness, Assessment, and Action.
Our first A is for AWARENESS. This is the phase where prevention is still possible. You want to make sure that you and your children are not easy targets. The best way to do that is to remain aware of your surroundings. Being aware of your surroundings is not limited to simply your location. You also want to be aware of the people who are near you.
One of the simplest ways to stay aware is to limit distraction, especially from devices. Keep your eyes up and scan your surroundings instead of looking down at your device. Remove your earbuds or airpods and stay alert.
If you are inside, take note of all entrances and exits. If you are outside, scan for any places that are not well lit or are concealed.
Take note of anything that seems unusual, suspicious, or out of place. Some things worth paying extra attention to are people sitting inside of a car parked next to yours or a van with dark tinted windows parked close to your vehicle.
Remember to be intentional about choosing parking spaces. Choose spaces that are close to the building and in well lit parts of the lot or parking garage. Always trust your instincts. If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.
At a certain point in a potentially dangerous situation, you’ll reach the phase where you need to evaluate and assess your risk and decide on your next moves.
When you hit the assessment stage, you are in a much better position if you followed the tips in the section above and you are aware of your surroundings. You never want to be caught off guard.
Take time in the moment to evaluate each of your options. You’ll need to fight the fear and stay calm so that you can do this with a level head. Then, pick your battles but do whatever is in your power not to go anywhere with your attacker.
If you found yourself in a situation where it is necessary to take action, you’ve reached the fight or flight phase. I hope for you and myself that we never have to use these tips but we need to know them, to give ourselves the best chance of survival.
You may become involved in a situation where it is necessary to fight for your life and the lives of your children. In this case, use whatever you have available to you. This might be a metal water bottle, your keys, or a pen. If you are super well prepared, you may even have pepper spray or a whistle on you. Use these items.
Use them in a strategic manner to strike in the areas where your attacker is the most vulnerable. Capitalize on any hesitation as an opportunity to escape. If you’ve surveyed your surroundings well, use an escape route that would be least convenient for your attacker to follow or catch up to you.