Assessing Your Personal Safety In Public
Chris McGoey (President, McGoey Security Consulting) gives expert video advice on: What are the warning signs that I am about to be attacked? and more...
How reliable is my intuition or gut when I feel that I am in danger?
People's intuition varies greatly. It's much like common sense, either you have good common sense or you have poor common sense; intuition's the same way. Intuition is also based on life experience. If someone has grown up in quiet, rural surroundings then they may not be as intuitive when they enter a city environment, and vice versa. I think it's important that people adhere to their gut instincts, especially when they're out in public. I speak to a lot of victims who say "I saw that guy there but I didn't want to appear afraid so I just kept walking and then he attacked me. If I only would have listened to my intuition I would have avoided this incident." In those cases, it seems their intuition was right.
How can I tell if someone may be a predator?
Using good common sense and judgments are important. How someone approaches and the body language they display are usually good indicators as to their intent. It's also important to consider that alcohol may intensify ones mood and behavior, changing their personality and making them more aggressive.
What is the best way to respond when a stranger approaches me?
If you're by yourself, it's important to stay calm and think quickly; allot of these situations elevate or dissipate depending on the conduct of the people involved. Sometimes, someone will approach you and ask for the time or directions. You just have to decide; "does this person really fit into the setting or is he just trying to get close to me?" If you are unsure or if your suspicions are high then it's worth shouting or even walking away, doing something to break that tension is useful, as the stranger often hasn't committed to attacking you yet. If you can make the first move and put them off by telling them "stop!” then that will prevent the incident from going any further. You can always apologize later if you were wrong.