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.
If you found this information helpful, please share it with other moms like you and share it with your children who are old enough to be on their own. The more we can help to spread this message, the more empowered us moms can be to keep ourselves and our kids safe.
And remember, a child can go missing in the blink of an eye. If that happens, I know you want to be as calm and as prepared as possible to locate and reunite with your missing child. Let us help you do that with our Child Safety Identification Kit. You can get your FREE kit by clicking here.
He is a big part of the operations here at PreparaMom and PreparaKit and I thought it might be nice for our audience to get to know what he does as a firefighter.
What Does a Firefighter Do All Day?
First, a little background. Some have mentioned to me that they have this totally inaccurate picture of firefighters as guys who sit around the station and wash the fire-truck while they just wait for a call to come in. That couldn’t be further from the truth!
Firefighters have to stay in peak physical condition because their lives and the lives of others depend on it. That means two hours a day of mandatory gym time, plus constant training and practice to maintain skills and competency.
Staying in Peak Condition is Part of the Job for Firefighters!
Inspections, community help and outreach, as well as equipment checks and maintenance, means no real time to yourself because at any moment, it’s expected that you have to be out the door within two minutes of a call and to the scene of the emergency within five minutes. Let’s just say they learn real quick to use the potty quickly! ?
What Advice Does a Firefighter Have for Parents?
Dave has a pretty good idea of how to be prepared at a moment’s notice to be on the move. Trust me, I know first hand!
I specifically asked him to share any unique advice for parents from a firefighter perspective to help parents be better prepared for emergency situations.
Dave’s main emphasis is on preparation and awareness. Seeing as this is the main part of his job, it is no wonder that he would be keen on these areas!
Being Prepared Means Staying Calm In Emergency Situations
Preparation as a parent can mean making sure you fill up your gas tank as soon as it gets near a quarter tank, ideally half a tank. Having gas in your tank means you can be assured to get as far away as you need or get to the help you need. This is something he is always on me to keep up with.
Dave always makes sure to keep supplies in the trunk of our car for emergency situations. Supplies such as water, first aid kit (this is a really good one!?), blanket, disposable gloves, utility knife, and flashlights.
Be Aware of Your Surroundings
With awareness, you need to be alert to what is going on around you at all times. Kids usually do fire drills at school and now they’re adding active shooter drills as well. But sadly, these alarming situations can happen anywhere and at any time.
I never realized this but whenever we fly on an airplane, he is already checking out the exits and talking to our son about the exit plan. If you’re on an airplane, prepare your child by talking to them about what they would do if there was an emergency and where they would go if they had to exit the plane quickly. (Don’t blow off those instructions before the flight given to you by the flight attendant.)
If you’re in a restaurant or movie theater, you need to be able to find two different exit points you can use. Head for the nearest one; but if it’s blocked, you should be able to adjust and switch to a different exit.
He is always telling our kids that it’s fine if you get scared in a situation. But don’t lose your head and start panicking. This is when you’re going to get into a serious problem. As long as you know in advance what to do, you can fall back on that and stay calm and collected while you get out of harm’s way.
Thank a Firefighter for the Work They Do!
Firefighters have a tough job as evidenced by all the work and training that they do. I couldn’t be more proud of my husband.
This year, for Firefighter’s Day, thank a firefighter for all that they do in the community. And spend this time talking to your children about what they can learn from firefighters so they can stay prepared and be safe year-round.