1. Look where you’re going. Check out the gas station, ATM, 7-Eleven etc. before you pull up/go in so you don’t become part of a stickup in progress.
2. Wake up. Turn off your iPod/iPhone etc. when out in public. Don’t jog with earphones.
3. Maintain a Personal Comfort Zone. No stranger or hostile relation is allowed to get closer than 5 feet to you without vetting or permission. Period. If they do, attack the attacker [Brad Steiner]. Practice a relaxed, non-threatening listening stance you can explode from (see the “Jack Benny stance” in our books How to Fight For Your Life and Attack Proof and the Companion Part 1 DVD.
4. Walk wide around building corners. Don’t get jumped.
5. React. Practice a high speed flinch response in the event you’re surprised by a sound, movement or touch (see the “Fright Reaction” in the above resources).
6. Watch your drink. Someone could slip a knock out drug in your cocktail. Typical abduction/rape/murder ruse.
7. No stranger gets in your house. Ever. Even if it’s a little girl screaming to use your phone to call her daddy because her mommy’s lying in the road bleeding to death. Call 911 for her. Otherwise, you open the door and 3 mutants rush in and a horrific home invasion begins.
8. Flat tire in a bad neighborhood? Drive on your rims. New wheels are a small price to pay for avoiding a violent car jacking.
9. People give you a bad feeling as you walk down a street? Do you: Make eye contact? Don’t make eye contact? Look assertive? Reach for your gun? Walk down a different street.
10. You’re being mugged for your money. Don’t fish around in your purse/wallet for bills. Be cooperative. Give them your whole wallet (prepare a separate “mugging” wallet with a few dollars). But…
11. Never go to crime scene #2. If all they want is money, fine. But if they want to take you somewhere, make your stand and fight for your life, right now. You stand a better chance of surviving. If you go with them, statistics say will you not escape or be rescued. You will probably die or be so f’d up you’ll wish you had died.
UGLY TRUTHS ABOUT SELF-DEFENSE
• If you are NOT a cop, a soldier or a security professional and you get into a fight for any reason other than to defend your life or a loved one’s from IMMINENT danger when you could have walked or run away, YOU are the problem (and a complete ass).
• Fighting to defend your “honor” from verbal assault makes you a criminal in the eye’s of the law. Prepare to defend your honor in prison. The family that depends on you will really appreciate it.
• Learning self-defense to make you a “master street fighter,” “dueler of death” or just a “bad-ass mo-fo” makes you a jerk.
• In the eyes of the law, unless you felt “you were going to die,” you’re as much a criminal as your attacker.
• If you use a knife on your attacker, in most states in the U.S. you are already a criminal.
• A knife in the hands of your attacker makes him an instant 50th degree Black Belt. Despite all the martial arts mythology and movie-making, there is no completely effective defense against a knife. You can improve your odds slightly but remember, unlike on TV, there’s a million ways you can be hacked up with a knife.
• In real life, practically no one will ever attack you the way it’s demonstrated in 99% of martial art schools.
• If you have to save your life, you’d better not grapple your attacker or engage in any other kind of sport-based nonsense. Every additional second you are connected to your attacker you are closer to dying…or becoming a criminal yourself.
• If you make the mistake of “fighting” some guy, you can be sure you’ll be “fighting” his buddies also. Prepare to be stomped to death. Every additional second you “fight” exposes you to more assailants and potential weapons that you will not survive no matter how “badass” you think you are.
• If in the process of fighting your way free you maim or kill your attacker, you will have to live with that the rest of your life. This can potentially create in the prison of your mind a worse hell than anything you may face for real. PTSD is real and some of the toughest cops and soldiers suffer from it. It had better have been worth it. It helps if you’ve adopted a philosophy of avoiding violence as opposed to macho-posturing. Then, when you have to turn it loose…you really will. There’ll be no moral ambiguity (but even then, don’t expect the law to see it that way).
• Educate yourself about your rights as a victim, the law’s view of “appropriate uses of force,” and the ramifications of ignoring them.
Avoid all fights at all costs. Escape is always the #1 priority. Fight only if you think you’re going to be killed that second. Not threatened or insulted. Then escape.
10 TRUTHS ABOUT REAL VIOLENCE
1. It doesn’t matter whether you know one technique or a thousand—
YOU CAN NEVER PREDICT EXACTLY HOW YOU’LL BE ATTACKED.
2. Ask any cop or soldier who’s seen real mayhem: once the spit hits the fan,
all pre-planned counters go right out the window.
3. If you’ve been programmed by training a specific response to a specific
attack, your self-defense will FAIL if the attack changes by even one inch from
the way you’ve trained. Your unrehearsed response will be your only response.
4. An attack in progress can CHANGE in an instant…and keep on changing
until you’re dead.
5. Believing that One “Magic” Technique will work against a hundred different
attacks is a suicidal myth. IT IS FAR BETTER TO DEVELOP THE ABILITY TO
IMPROVISE ANY STRIKE FROM ANY POSITION SPONTANEOUSLY WITH
POWER, ACCURACY AND BALANCE THAN TO RELY ON CHOREOGRAPHED
6. Real self-defense is about IMPROVISATION, SURVIVAL and ESCAPE and not
fancy acrobatic dueling or sport fighting in the Ring.
7. Real self-defense recognizes that trying to grapple or otherwise CONTROL the
enemy exposes you to more danger each additional second you’re connected to
8. Real self-defense requires training to deal with the reality of MULTIPLE
ASSAILANTS—because if you’re focused on grappling on the ground with only one
attacker, his buddies will have an easier time kicking your head in.
9. Real self-defense should work even if you’re NOT an Olympic athlete.
10. Real violence is ugly, unpredictable and CHAOTIC by nature. Your attacker obeys
no rules and neither should you. So why spend years and thousands of dollars
practicing sportive, rigid, repetitive or pre-arranged forms and techniques when you
may be fighting for your life?
Self-defense is not a sport, a dance or what you see in the movies…
What is the Holy Grail of Self-Defense?
Also read: Self Defense Has No Rules
The Gift of Fear: a précis
The Gift of Fear: summing up the strategies used by criminals and con men…
Con men use social skills to get close to and manipulate their victims. They are better at doing this than most people are at seeing through them.
Gavin de Becker wrote an amazing book called: “The Gift Of Fear.” In it he identifies 6 strategies that criminals use which can be identified and used to boomerang back on them, whether they are after you wallet or your life.
Reading this is no substitute to reading the book. I wrote this to encourage folks to get it and read it diligently.
1. Forced Teaming - the false “WE” partnership. De Becker gives many examples of what this looks like but it boils down to phrases and attitude that imply that two strangers (one of which is you) have a lot in common and are sharing a moment, getting closer and trusting each other as it were.
Defence - Don’t buy in; make it clear you are not partners and never will be. Who invited him into your life anyway? Raise your voice, be firm, be rude if you want.
2. Charm and Niceness - Charm is what someone does, not what they are. Sincere charm is one social skill that all con men and a lot of street criminals share, but it is fake. They do not mean it and it is very hard to resist.
Defence - If someone is being nice out of the blue, ask, “Why is he being so nice?” Explicitly rebuff his approach with no ambiguous terms. “Go away! Leave me alone!” You may even be rude. If he really is nice, he will listen.
3. Too many details - He knows what he is saying is a lie so he tries to hide the lie with detail to make it sound real. Not just, “Have you seen a small dog go by here?” but “ I’m looking for my small spaniel. She has a ribbon and a collar and likes people. I don’t know what I’ll do if I don’t find her.”
Defence - This rush of details is the tip off that it is a lie. Never forget - this is a stranger who has approached you. He wants something from you. Reject him verbally, politely but firmly. Back away if he is too close. Bring anything you might have to hand up between you. You are not engaging him; you are showing him you can and will fight if pushed.
4. Typecasting - this is the use of a mild criticism or insult to get you to prove that you are not like that by doing what he wants you to do. “To good to talk to me, hey? Are you a snob? Just too proud to accept help, hmmm?”
Defence - If someone is trying to get closer to you and makes this type of implication, realise you are now in a fight, perhaps for you life. You don’t have to prove you are not like that, but you do have to prove to him he’s picked the wrong person to insult, even in a kindly or joking manner.
Raise your voice, be firm, be rude if you want.
5. The Unsolicited Promise - Promises are made to convince us he /she is trustworthy and we tend to think they are guarantees. Therefore our trust level goes up. “Just hlp me for a minute and then I’ll be out of your hair, I promise” “
Defence - This is one of the most reliable of all the signals as it nearly always is used to hide a questionable motive.
Ask yourself: “Why does this person feel the need to convince
me he is trustworthy? Why is it so important?” Then, act appropriately, and loudly.
6. Discounting the word “NO!” - Another very reliable signal. If a person is choosing not to hear your “No” then they are trying to manipulate you.
Defence - Never negotiate “no.” The criminal needs you to do something before she can spring her trap. Drive her somewhere, let her into your house to use the phone or get a drink of water, etc. If the door opens a crack, she will be ready to exploit it and smash her way in, so, if someone argues against your “no”, then escalate your safety immediately. If they are foiled, they will go elsewhere.
TheNonProfits.com Safety Tips For Women
“For safety is not a gadget but a state of mind.” ~Eleanor Everet “Safety doesn’t happen by accident.” ~Author Unknown “Safety First” is “Safety Always.” ~Charles M. Hayes “Better a thousand times careful than once dead.” ~Proverb “Precaution is better than cure.” ~Edward Coke
“Tips on staying safe… for women”
The elbow is the strongest point on your body. If you are close enough to use it, do!
If you are ever thrown into the trunk of a car, kick out the back tail lights and stick your arm out the hole and start waving like crazy. The driver won’t see you but everybody else will. This has saved lives.
The three reasons women are easy targets for random acts of violence are:
1) Lack of Awareness - You MUST know where you are & what’s going on around you.
2) Body Language - Keep your head up, swing your arms, stand straight up.
3) Wrong Place, Wrong Time - DON’T walk alone in an alley, or drive in a bad neighborhood at night.
Women have a tendency to get into their cars after shopping, eating, working, etc., and just sit (doing their checkbook, or making a list, etc.) DON’T DO THIS! The predator will be watching you, and this is the perfect opportunity for him to get in the passenger side, put a gun to your head, and tell you where to go. AS SOON AS YOU GET INTO YOUR CAR, LOCK THE DOORS AND LEAVE.
A few notes about getting into your car in a parking lot, or parking garage: Be aware: look around you, look into your car, at the passenger side floor,and in the back seat. If you are parked next to a big van, enter your car from the passenger door. Most serial killers attack their victims by pulling them into their vans while the women are attempting to get into their cars. This is a good reason to park away from big vans.
Look at the car parked on the drivers side of your vehicle, and the passenger side. If a male is sitting alone in the seat nearest your car, you may want to walk back into the mall, or work, and get a guard/policeman towalk you backout. IT IS ALWAYS BETTER TO BE SAFE THAN SORRY. (Better paranoid than dead.)
ALWAYS take the elevator instead of the stairs. (Stairwells are horrible places to be alone and the perfect crime spot.) Do not get on an elevator if there is a weirdo already on there. (Of course bad men don’t always look bad.) Do not stand back in the corners of the elevator. Be near the front, by the doors, ready to get off or on. If you get on the elevator on the 25th floor, and the Boogie Man gets on the 22nd, get off when he gets on. Don’t ride the elevator with him if you are not comfortable.
If the predator has a gun and you are not under his control, ALWAYS RUN! Police only make 4 of 10 shots when they are in range of 3-9 feet. This is due to stress. The predator will only hit you (a running target) 4 in 100 times. And even then, it most likely WILL NOT be a vital organ. RUN!
As women, we are always trying to be sympathetic: STOP IT! It may get you raped, or killed. Ted Bundy, the serial killer, was a good looking,well-educated man, who ALWAYS played on the sympathies of unsuspecting women. He walked with a cane, or a limp, and often asked “for help” into his vehicle or with his vehicle, which is when he abducted his next victim.
Pat Malone told us the story of his daughter, who came out of the mall and was walking to her car when she noticed 2 older ladies in front of her. Then she saw a police car come towards her with officers who said hello. She also noticed that all 8 handicap spots in the area were empty. As she neared her car, she saw a man a few rows over calling to her for help. He wanted her to close his passenger side door. He was sitting in the driver’s side, and said he was handicapped. He continued calling, until she turned and headed back to the mall, and then he began cursing at her. In the meantime, she wondered why he didn’t ask the 2 older ladies, or the policeman for help, and why he was not parked in any of the empty handicap spots. As she got back to the mall, two male friends of hers were exiting, and as she told them the story, and turned to point at the car, the man was getting out of the back seat into the front, and the car sped away. DON’T GET CAUGHT IN THIS TRAP.
Tips to saving your life, if you have gotten into a violent situation:
REACT IMMEDIATELY - If he abducts you in a parking lot, and is taking you to an abandoned area, DON’T LET HIM GET YOU TO THAT AREA. If you are driving, react immediately in the situation, and crash your car while still going 5 mph. If he’s driving, find the right time, and stick your fingers in his eyes. He must watch the road, so choose an unsuspecting time, and gouge him. It is your ONLY defense. While he is in shock, GET OUT. This sounds gross, but the alternative is worse if you do not act.
RESIST - Don’t go along with him: Run, if you are able: DON’T EVER GIVE UP! You DO NOT want to get to a crime scene.
Always keep your distance when walking past strangers on the street or in dark areas.
GET A CELL PHONE: There are packages for $19.95 a month that allow you to program only 911 into the dialing out program. (This is an alternative for parents who say it is too expensive for their kids to have a cell phone.)
BREAK DOWNS: Make every effort to avoid this by ALWAYS keeping your carin good working order. If your car breaks down:
LOCK YOUR DOORS. You better have a cell phone to call for help. If you don’t have a cell phone: (shame on you) keep a blanket, warm clothes, a pair of boots, and a flashlight in your car always, for emergencies.
If it’s noon on a business day, you may want to put your hazards on and walk to safety. If it’s 2 AM, put on your warm clothes, and walk to a lighted area. You are a perfect target if you are sitting in your car broken down. Predators search the highways for easy targets like you.
If you’re on a desolate road: walk away from the car (in your warm clothes) and go to some bushes, or some area AWAY from your vehicles. It will be cold, and uncomfortable, but you DO NOT want to stay in your car, and there are no psycho bogeymen waiting in the bushes who knew you were going to break down there and then.
Physical defenses that we can use against the violent predator: The EYES are the most vulnerable part of the body. Poke him there HARD. It may be your only window of opportunity.
The neck is also a vulnerable spot, but you MUST know where to grip, AND HAVE THE STRENGTH to cut off his breath. Punch him in the throat to cut off his air supply.
The last place is the KNEES. Everyone’s knees are very vulnerable, and a swift kick here will take anyone down. **** A cautionary note about these things. If you do not do these things right the first time, you are in trouble, because it will only anger the individual, and that anger will be TAKEN OUT ON YOU. I’m not saying don’t attempt them, it may be your only hope, but be forceful when you do.
If you are walking alone in the dark (which you shouldn’t be) and you find him following/chasing you: Scream “FIRE!” and not “help”; People don’t want to get involved when people yell “help” but “fire” draws attention because people are nosy. RUN!
Find an obstacle, such as a parked car, and run around it, like Ring Around the Rosie. This may sound silly, but over the years, 5 women have told Pat Malone that this SAVED THEIR LIVES. Your last hope is getting under the car. Once you are under there, there are tons of things to hold onto, and he will not be able to get you out and will not come under for you (most likely). Usually they give up by this point. The catch here is that YOU MUST PRACTICE GETTING UNDER THE CAR. You must have a plan (he will have one); know if you will be going on your back, front, from the side or back of the car. It must be practiced.
Never let yourself or anyone that you know be the “closer” in any type of business (bar, store, restaurant, gas station). Pat knew Danielle, who was a girl that just died from being shot point blank by some kids while she was closing at the local gas station. He talked with her the night before she died, and asked whether it ever scared her to close alone. She said, “Yes, but I’ll be allright, Pat. I’ll be all right.” She wasn’t. Our world is not as safe as we pretend that it is, and living in our fantasy worlds WILL get us in trouble, sooner or later. Pat Malone said again and again that the women who die EVERY MINUTE from violent crimes expected to go to bed tonight, and get up tomorrow. No one expects it,but we must be prepared and aware so that we HAVE A PLAN. BE PREPARED TO ACT! AND ACT HARD! HAVE A PLAN!
I would encourage you to pass this on to all women, not just your friends and family, but everybody. We all need to hear it. For you and to share with your family, especially the women.
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