I’ve had this in my files for ages, and it’s time to share it with you. I hope you enjoy it!
One of my favorite books is “The Gift of Fear” by Gavin de Becker. It’s a deep dive into people who did not trust their instinct and unknowingly put themselves into danger.
It got me thinking about what I’ve done with my own life and how anyone – whether you’re a single woman living on her own for the first time, or you have a growing family – could make good use of these tips.
- Obviously, the first piece of advice that I have is probably the most important one:
Do not answer the door to a stranger.
If you weren’t expecting anyone, why would you open your door to them? You don’t owe anybody the time of day, whether you’re in your home or you’re out and about living your life. Protect yourself in this basic way.
2. Get a security system or install motion sensor lights and alarms for your doors and windows. Advertise that the premises have an alarm system.
3. Have a deadbolt and a peephole that you can cover when not in use, or another way to look through the door, such as a Ring system.
4. Have a chain or security lock on your door. Don’t rely on it because they can be easily bypassed, and your doors can still be forced open. However, it should provide a measure of deterrence. Any deterrent that saves you even seconds is worth utilizing.
6. Befriend neighbors and any police officers who may live in your neighborhood. Let them know when you will be out of town so they can keep an eye on your place if you feel comfortable sharing that information.
7. Place a pair of muddy men’s work boots outside your door and mix in some men’s laundry with yours when you’re hanging it out to dry so it looks as though there is a man’s presence.
8. Have a weapon such as a gun, a baseball bat, taser, pepper spray, hammer, keys, knife, scissors, etc. in every room. I don’t advocate for illegal use of weapons so if there’s training (such as you would need with a gun), please please please, take it.
Extra tip on a the baseball bat: the first instinct for someone swinging a bat at you is to grab it. Put an old sock and all they’ll grab is the sock.
9. Carry a personal-sized weapon on you in your bag or on a key chain.
10. Always have your phone within reach.
11. Take a self-defense class.
12. Put noisemakers such as bells or bottles near entrances that will alert you to someone entering your home. You can even use something as lowkey as a kukui shell necklace. Bells are good energy for Feng shui too.
13. Get a dog.
14. Phone apps like Kitestring help alert friends if something amiss happens to you.
15. Have a plan for what you will do if someone tries to enter your home while you’re there.
This isn’t the be-all, end-all list, of course. But it should get you thinking about your personal safety, no matter what stage you are at in life.
Let me know if you have any additional tips to share; I know there’s a ton of them out there. I’d love to hear from you, please comment and share this article with your friends and family.