One of the biggest favors that we can do for ourselves is to maintain a good degree of situational awareness as we go about our normal business. The majority of threats that we will encounter will come unannounced and require an immediate response, and having good situational awareness helps us to act accordingly when these times come along.
I recently came across a video that shows a disabled guy with a cane standing outside of an office. At the same time, police were chasing an armed suspect through the parking lot. The suspect ran right towards the guy, the guy stepped out of the way, and he stuck his cane in front of the suspect. The suspect tripped and fell, and the police were able to place him into custody without a shot being fired.
All it took to put an end to a potentially-deadly situation was some quick thinking and making good use of a resource that was available at the time.
No Time to Think
The guy didn’t have a lot of time to react. In just a few seconds, he was able to size up the situation, determined that his response was risk-averse, and he acted. Good situational awareness led to an appropriate response that was carried out almost instinctively, nobody got hurt, and the bad guy got hauled off to jail.
We occasionally hear stories of people doing simple things that ultimately have a big impact on preventing tragedies from occurring. It never ceases to amaze me that despite all of our planning, skill-building and investments that we make in our preparedness efforts, simply being at the right place at the right time, and doing the right thing, can put an end to a threat in a matter of seconds, and this happens more often than not.
What we do in the heat of any given moment is more-consequential than what we have. Stockpiles, bug out bags, survival kits and weapons are merely tools that we can utilize at the time, but how those things are used depends on the choices we make. Nothing trumps good situational awareness, not only for being able to neutralize threats, but for general survival as well.
However, this is a skill that far-too-many people fail to adequately develop, and this places them at a disadvantage when confronted with a life-or-death situation. Just think of all the tragedies that we analyze and pick apart. We look at most of them and think, “well, if only they just did or that, then they’d still be alive…”. Most people die because they made a small mistake at the worst possible time, and a lot of that is a consequence of not having good situational awareness.
We don’t talk about it enough, but situational awareness is just as important as finding water, food, shelter and protection. Not only can good situational awareness help us to get out of trouble, but it can also help us to avoid getting into dangerous situations in the first place. At the end of the day, we don’t need to be Rambo to survive an imminent threat, we just need to act appropriately based on the situation at hand. Make sure that you are continually developing and honing this skill, and never underestimate the importance of being aware of your surroundings at all times.