There is so much violence on the streets these days. No one feels safe in their neighbourhoods, on the streets or even in our homes. Crime rate has increased tremendously and the level of insecurity in the country keeps rising daily. This is giving so much cause for concern. It was reported in Statista, that crime areas that received the most concerns are mugging and robbery, while others such as burglary, carjacking, theft and attacks also received high levels of concern. With the way things are going, obviously, it has become very necessary for everyone to be aware and informed of things they can do to defend and protect themselves to ensure your safety at any point in time. The warning signs may vary but the devastating effects are usually the same. That is why it is important to always be prepared for the worst. Gladly, there are things you can do to improve your chances of encountering an attack or surviving it. Here are some helpful self-defence tips that can help save your live. 1. Pay Attention to Your Surroundings. The best way to stay safe is to avoid being a target. Criminals study their potential victims and identify those that appear vulnerable or distracted, and those that will likely give them less trouble and an easy chance at escaping. So your best chance is to avoid being an easy target. When walking, be very attentive to what is going on around you. Be self-aware of your surroundings. Walk with your head up. You don’t want to use anything that can easily distract you, like wearing headphones or texting, etc. Your eyes and ears are most valuable and should be put to good use easily detecting if anybody or anything unusual is lurking. Also, you should avoid sitting in your car alone distracted with your phone. You are better off sitting in a busy shopping mall or store. Or better still, walk to a public space with crowd. 2. Dress Accordingly Of course, where you are going to determines how you dress and what you wear. But if you are more likely going to be walking home, then avoid tight fitting clothes or shoes with heels. Wear clothes that will allow you move freely. Always keep a pair of running shoes in your car or carry them with you. Being able to run away from your attacker or any potential threat can avoid a confrontation you don’t need and the last thing you want is a tight skirt or heels getting in your way. 3. Get Noisy and Loud The most you can do in any unexpected situation is to scream for help. If someone suddenly grabs you, be as noisy and loud as a siren. Your noise will definitely draw the attention of others and the last thing any attacker wants is to get noticed by other people. It also shows that you are not an easy target. If you scream and attract attention to someone you wrong misunderstood, you don’t need to feel embarrassed. It’s better to be embarrassed and walk away alive than to take chances that can cost you your life. 4. Maintain Your Visibility Always choose your route to your destination properly. Sometimes, shortcuts are not always the best, especially if it is not busy or does not have proper lighting. Criminals tend to hang around areas with fewer people and you are better off staying off such routes. Try avoiding such routes. It is better to add some extra minutes driving or walking through busier streets that are well lit-up and will keep you safe. It is always “better late than never”. 5. Carry a Safety ToolKit Always carry items that you can use to protect yourself if you end up in an unexpected situation. There are many self-defence tools you can use to deter or overpower any attacker. At the very least, a safety alarm or a whistle can alert other people around to come to your rescue and at the same time may deter any potential attacker. Although, carrying lethal weapons can potentially be used against you, but non-lethal weapons like pepper spray and Tasers are a great option. Just make sure you know how to use them well. A powerful jolt from a Taser stun gun can give you the time you need to escape. 6. Apply Car Intelligence When driving, be as vigilant as you can be. Look out for any car following you. Try as much as possible to avoid sitting in your car for a long period as this will make you an easy target for any predator to make a move on you. Ensure that your car keys are in your hands before leaving any building and unlock it only when you are very close to your car. If you unlock your car from a distance, this can give any predator an opportunity to creep inside your car without being noticed. Also, get in through the passenger’s side if you notice any suspicious car parked on the driver’s side. 7. Fight Back When prevention and toolkit seem to have failed you, fighting your way out may be your last option. Be prepared to release all your inner strength into the direct blows and punches you throw at your attacker. If you have zero-fighting skills, try these tricks to help you. Your fist, elbows and knees will be your strongest parts to strike a punch and hit hard. Aim for the attacker’s weakest parts of the body like the face, eyes, nose, jaw, throat and groin. Focusing on the right places to hit and ensuring you leave your attacker in so much pain can give you the opportunity you need to run for safety. 8. Do Not Allow Yourself Be Taken to Another Location Do whatever you can to prevent the attacker from taking you to another location. Predators usually want to move their prey away from people to a quieter and lonely area where they will less likely get caught. They will try to frighten you by threatening to kill you if you scream or run. Your best chance is to do it anyway because they probably won’t want to attack you in the presence of several witnesses. If he has a gun pointed at you, run in a zigzag direction. This will reduce your chances of getting hit by the bullet. 9. Practice Safety Online Your personal information should be kept away from social media. These days, people give out all sort of information in the name of content. From their location, to their favourite meal or next visit, or even their next planned trip, etc. This way, you are giving your predator too much information about yourself that they can use to get to you. And you never know, your predator may just be one of your followers. So, the best way to stay safe online is to be to discrete.