My Journey to Stay Safe

I’m just 1 person concerned about my own safety. Whether you’re in your own home or out traveling the world or online, there are many threats to your safety. But there are also many ways to be prepared, aware, smart, and look after yourself. 

I remember a dinner table discussion my family had when I was younger where my sister and I were discussing different ways we held our keys when walking through a parking lot at night, in case we were attacked. My father was confused by this discussion and eventually realized that he had never once had to think about his safety walking from a store to his car at night, whereas my sister and I always took precautions of having our phone out of sight but in our hand or our finger on the car alarm alert button or both. 

Everyone has a different perception of what will help them stay safe, based on their demographics, cultural and societal perceptions, physical locations, and many other factors. And of course there’s only so much you can do, but it brings peace of mind to be able to do something. 

Safety can take many forms, and these will often overlap with each other: 

  • Emergency preparedness
  • Physical wellbeing
  • Emotional wellbeing and determining your boundaries
  • Awareness of your environment
  • Common sense  
  • Street smarts

Because I live alone, I’m the only one responsible for keeping myself as safe and prepared as I can be. For example, I try to keep emergency supplies on hand and to not climb up on unstable chairs from which I might fall when cleaning. Blog articles throughout the month will dive deeper into some of these topics. Here are a few stops along my journey to stay safe:

  • Keep medicines and bandages in stock
  • Maintain emergency boxes of supplies
  • Have a fire safe where I keep personal important documents
  • Test my smoke detectors and have a fire extinguisher and baking soda in the kitchen
  • Have an emergency kit in my car 
  • Keep flashlights on each level of my home 
  • Post a note in an easy-to-find location with emergency contact information
  • Have medicine and emergency supplies in my bag or purse
  • Be mindful of what I post on social media regarding my house and my schedule (when I will be home/away/traveling)
  • Research the areas to which I’m planning to drive or travel
  • Sign up for local emergency alerts for the areas in which I live and work
  • Have emergency contact information on my phone’s lock screen
  • Hide valuables, electronics, or money out of sight and secure on my person
  • Set up a pandemic cleaning station by the door where I quarantine mail, keep hand sanitizer and wipes, and place freshly laundered cloth masks
  • Know my personal boundaries and comfort zones online or in person (and have plans for what to do if those are violated)
  • Always wear a seatbelt in a car, taxi, bus, airplane, or other moving vehicle when it’s an option
  • Try not to take foolish risks (and think before I act)

A few hours after I finished the first draft of this post, I found myself walking down the stairs in my home rather quickly with a spoon in my mouth. “What am I doing?!” went through my mind about halfway down. Remembering the way my aunt injured herself doing almost exactly the same thing, I took the spoon out of my mouth and descended the rest of the stairs at a normal pace. There’s always time to be mindful of your safety. 

What do you do to keep yourself safe?

Photo by Piotr Chrobot on Unsplash

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