5 Tips for Being Aware of Your Surroundings
It's easy to get distracted when you have an attention span shorter than a goldfish, but that can lead to dangerous and careless mistakes.
Being aware of your surroundings can be the difference between life and death. It's something that doesn't come naturally for most, in fact, in recent years even the courts have recognized how unreliable eye witness testimony is.
There are things you can do to improve your ability to stay present and safe no matter where you are or what you're doing.
Keep reading for tips on how to stay safe by being more aware of your surroundings.
1. Disconnect to Reconnect
Most people today spend their lives with a cellphone or mobile device attached to their hand. Millions attend events rarely looking up from the tiny screen in front of them. They want to tweet or post about where they are and what they're doing but this obsession with sharing life online has made us disconnect from what is actually happening around us.
Putting down your phone and other mobile devices gives your brain the opportunity to take notice of more peripheral things and people around you.
It's always good to have a cellphone in case of emergency but it can be a harmful distraction even if you aren't using it. This means you must be proactive about being aware of your surroundings.
Taking fifteen minutes to disconnect can help you to be more connected during the rest of the day with life offline.
2. Meditate for 15 Minutes a Day
Disconnecting from the cyber world will be most beneficial if you concentrate on being more present and meditating each day. Just 15 minutes a day can be life changing for many. It'll help reduce your anxiety, increase concentration and lengthen attention span, lower risk of health issues and allow you to be more aware of yourself and your surroundings.
If you're not one for conscious meditation you can take other steps to help your mind and body be in optimal shape to react and deal with any situation that arises.
Be Well Rested, Hydrated and Fed
Your body and mind need rest, hydration and proper nutrition to perform at its best. You will be more alert, react faster and think better when you are taking care of yourself.
Injuries, illness, lack of concentration, accidents, and mistakes are more likely when someone is tired, has poor nutrition or is dehydrated.
It'll be easier to recognize a danger if you aren't trying to stay awake or busy thinking about when you're going to eat next.
Drinking a glass of water may seem like a simple thing but hydration can make a huge difference in brain power, concentration, overall health, and mental and physical reflexes.
3. Breathe and Take It All In
When entering a new situation or assessing your surroundings take a moment to take a few deep breaths as you stop and take in everything around you. This can be done by consciously making a mental note of:
People Around You
Stop and look at each person around you. What are they wearing? Could you describe their features? Does any of their behavior cause concern?
There are have been kidnapping and sex traffic victims saved and brought home because of a stranger taking notice of the people around them and recognizing warning signs.
Notice Your Environment
Being aware of your surroundings and taking notice of your environment is essential to your safety.
If you closed your eyes could you describe the room? Do you know where the exits are if you had to leave quickly?
Anyone who has taken First Aid or emergency training knows that before you do anything else you need to identify and manage any dangers or risks in the area. This isn't just good advice for a crisis but should become a habit in your everyday life.
You can avoid injury, escape dangerous situations, and cope with any problems when you identify risks as early as possible.
4. Have a Plan and Be Prepared
One of the most successful ways to deal with any situation is to have a plan and a back-up plan. This will enable you to react more quickly in the case of an emergency.
Knowing what actions to take before a tire blows out on your car, or how to respond to an attacker can save your life and the lives of others.
You can thwart potential danger by having an action plan. If you have to walk alone at night ensure you prepare ahead of time by having:
- A friend accompany you
- A phone or means of communication
- A flashlight
- Learn self-defense
- Carry protective equipment (pepper spray, a whistle, stun gun or another way of protecting yourself.)
Another way to be proactive about safety is to park in well lit and populated areas, let someone know where you will be, and take care of your physical and mental health.
5. Timing Is Everything and Trust Your Gut
Time can be a huge key to being aware of your surroundings. Not just what time it is but the timing of actions and events around you.
If you are hiking in the woods it's good to note how long it's been since you passed other hikers or if someone is you're working alone how long has someone been loitering outside the store.
Being aware of someone suspicious spending a lot of time nearby or the absence of someone who should be there gives you a chance to react to a possibly dangerous situation and be the difference between a happy or tragic ending to an emergency.
Trust your instincts and if you feel you are in danger don't dismiss your gut feeling. Your quick reaction to red flags or signals of imminent danger can be the thing that saves you.
Being Aware of Your Surroundings: Better Safe Than Sorry
You can be proactive about your safety by being aware of your surroundings when you take the above steps.
For more tips on keeping you and your family safe, how to buy pepper spray and all your protection needs, explore our blog and shop.
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