As 2017 gets geared up, we’re all excited about how we can become the best versions of ourselves. I know I am. As you start to lose weight, read more and be a better dad, I suggest you develop some secure habits that will help you the rest of your life. Here are five to start with.
1) Get Your Face Out of Your Phone!!!
Chances are you are looking into your phone right now. Good, I’m glad you’re reading this article because this tells me you are serious about being safer. But I hope you’re not reading this at the gas pump, sitting outside at a cafe or worse, in line at the ATM. These are all places where you shouldn’t be looking at your phone, you need to be looking at what is going on around you. You cannot be prepared for the mugger next to your car if you never see him. Get your eyes up and see your environment.
2) Don’t Create Your Own Crime
There is a thing called a crime of opportunity. This is when someone makes a criminal act simply because the circumstances created the convenience for one. For example, if you leave your garage door open revealing that you’re not home while also leaving the window in living room open. Now a passerby thinks that he can make an easy score of a TV, game console or jewelry fairly easy because your negligence. You told him that you’re not home and gave him a way inside. So make sure you lock your doors when you leave and keep your garage door closed at all times. For more on this one, check out the Secure Dad 101 I wrote solely on this subject.
3) Make Emergency Plans
We all think about what to do if our house catches on fire. You leave the house as fast as you can and call for help. We’d like to think that is common sense. However there are a few things you must consider that support making and executing an emergency plan. First, your fight, flight or freeze response kicks in and the adrenaline kicks into overdrive as the smoke alarm goes off. You can’t count on your kids choosing the flight option their intuition gives them. You have to let them know how to use that feeling. Second, your fine motor skills will diminish possibly preventing you from yelling for your family to flee the house. So the best way to make sure everyone gets out okay is to make a plan, go over the plan with everyone and then hold a dry run. Also make a plan for a burglary and what to do in public if a confrontation occurs.
4) Learn to Trust God’s Gift of Intuition
Have you ever been on the interstate and seen a big rig swerving too much for comfort? Upon seeing the driver cross the white line too often you make the decision to speed up and get away from it to keep from being hit. What you just did is trust your intuition. Your brain told you that your safety was compromised and you acted accordingly. You use this incredible gift from God every day. However you have a strong sense in your body called denial and it conflicts intuition frequently. Now, denial has it’s place but it can lure you into unsafe situations.
Gavin de Becker says in his book, Protecting the Gift: Keeping Children and Teenagers Safe, “Safety starts with knowing that your intuition about people is a brilliant guardian.” Don’t deny your brilliant guardian to chance to keep you safe. Learn to trust that small voice inside you, God gave it to you for a reason.
5) Change Your Mindset
I have preached this simple idea for a long time: change your mindset about violence. You need to understand that bad things happen to good people. Once you accept that violence is part of human nature and that you can be a target of a crime, this knowledge will help you understand that you are responsible for your own safety. Knowing that you are vulnerable will make you stronger and help you plan to stay safe. Make your mindset secure.