Moving to a big city as a woman in your 20’s for college or work can be empowering and exhilarating but it can also be rife with dangers if you’re not accustomed to living solo. A study by the Brennan Center for Justice shows violent crime to be on the rise in the largest U.S cities. Here are a few tips to help you adjust to big city life and while staying safe.
Observe Your Surroundings
Always be cognizant of your environment and pay attention to those around you when in public spaces. Be on guard if you notice anything unusual or suspect. Avoid texting or being engrossed in your phone as this can detract you from noticing something out of the ordinary. Attackers often use the element of surprise in order to catch their victims off-guard.
However, you may want to always have your phone on hand and be ready to call emergency services if need be. Always make sure that you have your cell phone on you before leaving the house in order to avoid being stranded during an emergency situation.
Have Your Keys Ready
Always have the correct key ready if you’re approaching your home or vehicle. This will enable you to open the door promptly as an attack could occur while you’re fumbling for your kyes. Having your keys on-hand will also allow to you use them as a weapon if necessary.
Have A Plan
If you notice someone following you, whether it’s by foot or car you’ll want to avoid going directly to your home as this will alert the stalker where you live. Try to go to a public place or safe haven. Know the location of the nearest police station and head there if possible.
Have Pepper Spray On Hand
It may be a good idea to have pepper spray on hand in your home, purse and car. This way you’ll always have some on hand if needed and won’t have to move it from one place to another. Become familiar with your pepper spray so that you’ll be able to use it under pressure.
It’s easy to unlock pepper spray when you’re calm but it can be a different story when you’re under attack.
If you’re new to pepper spray, you may want to consider Pepper Face which is beginner-friendly as it prevents the user from accidentally spraying themselves. It’s important to note that pepper spray may not work or incapacitate every person. As a result you still need to be alert of your surroundings and you may also want to invest in a self-defense course.
Consider A Self-Defense Training Course
Avoid martial arts studios and self-defense programs that focus solely on martial arts techniques. Find a program that offers simulated attacks with an instructor acting as the perpetrator utilizing realistic scenarios.
Trust Your Intuition
We all have a “sixth sense” or general “feeling” when someone or something doesn’t feel quite right. We often ignore these feelings and write them off. Trust your intuition; if you have a bad feeling about a person or situation simply remove yourself from the scene.