Join us every Monday for the 2014 Be Prepared Summer Challenge
Are you aware of your surroundings? Situational awareness does not mean being paranoid or obsessively concerned about your security. It does not mean living with the irrational expectation that there is a dangerous criminal lurking behind every bush.
Situational awareness – the act of being aware of one’s surroundings – can greatly reduce your chances of becoming a victim. Whether it’s driving in hazardous conditions or shopping at the mall, being aware of what’s going on around you is important to your safety.
Check out some of these posts to gain valuable information and suggest ways that you can be come more aware. Teach your children.
1. A Practical Guide to Situational Awareness from StratFor Global Intelligence has an easy to understand explanation of the five levels of awareness and finding the right level of awareness to fit any given situation. They are:
- Tuned Out
- Relaxed Awareness
- Focused Awareness
- High Alert
“Because of this, the basic level of situational awareness that should be practiced most of the time is relaxed awareness, a state of mind that can be maintained indefinitely without all the stress and fatigue associated with focused awareness or high alert.
Relaxed awareness is not tiring, and it allows you to enjoy life while rewarding you with an effective level of personal security. When people are in an area where there is potential danger (which, in reality, is almost anywhere), they should go through most of the day in a state of relaxed awareness. Then if they spot something out of the ordinary that could be a threat, they can “dial up” to a state of focused awareness and take a careful look at that potential threat (and also look for others in the area).
If the possible threat proves innocuous, or is simply a false alarm, they can dial back down into relaxed awareness and continue on their way. If, on the other hand, the potential threat becomes a probable threat, seeing it in advance allows a person to take actions to avoid it. In such a case they may never need to elevate to high alert, since they have avoided the problem at an early stage.” read more at the post A Practical Guide to Situational Awareness
2. Gutter Fighting USA has seven basic awareness exercises you can use to increase your situational awareness. Try this one with your family (and be sure and catch the other six).
Observation Exercise (at home)—observe objects in a familiar room. Focus on imprinting the room and its contents on your mind. Have someone remove an object while you are out of the room. Can you discover what is missing? This article from Graywolf Survival goes into detail about the process of using Kim’s Game to observe your surroundings.
3. Lisa Bedford, in her book Survival Mom: How to Prepare Your Family for Everyday Disasters and Worst-Case Scenarios, says “You may be surprised to hear that the most important weapon isn’t a gun or a knife. It’s your brain.” See Chapter 8 – The Essentials for Safety and Security, pp 169.
She assigns four different color codes to her situational awareness levels. The color codes were originally developed by Jeff Cooper, but the descriptions are all Lisa!
- Level White – oblivious and only slightly aware of surroundings, people or events
- Level Yellow – relaxed but alert
- Level Orange – alert and focused on a specific person or event
- Level Red – touch my kid and I’ll kill you!
This post from her site – Staying Alert and Ready for Trouble: Violence at the Mall also has many tips to help you minimize distractions, dress appropriately and take self defense measures.
And here are a few other articles from other websites I respect:
This weeks challenge – read these excellent articles and spend some time this week observing the level of awareness you are usually exhibiting. Comments are king! Share a couple ideas for improving your situational awareness (surroundings) in your daily life.
Thanks for joining us for the Be Prepared Summer Challenge – Just do one more thing to be prepared.
Other Summer Challenge Posts: