Self-Confidence and Our Violent World
How to be confident? Let’s look back a little. Once upon a time, you were confident. Children start out that way. It’s what enables them to reach to pull themselves up to standing when they’re just beginning to walk. It’s how they play and learn and grow. Visit any playground, and you’ll see this kind of confidence in action in a thousand different ways.
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Sadly, confidence isn’t a constant thing. We’re never entirely, fully confident. So, while we might find the courage to ask out that special someone, we might find this same confidence faltering when we think about asking them to marry us after months of dating. Or we’re confident enough to do well on the job interview but lack the confidence to ask for a raise even though we’ve been at the job a while now and know we deserve it.
A lot of times this is because something along the way has shaken our confidence, if not broken it outright.
In the article, you’re going to learn how to give confidence a boost when it’s flagging. More importantly, you’ll learn how to build back your confidence in daily life, so that if you are at some point targeted in a violent crime – you will know what to do and how to have the confidence to take action.
We’ll start by learning the essentials, asking what confidence is, and talking about why it’s essential. From there, we tackle the question of how we can lose our confidence. We’ll end with an entire section on reclaiming confidence when it’s lost.
Sound good? Then sit back and prepare yourself for a story. The main character is a more confident, prepared you. Ready? Let’s begin.
Who are you when you’re confident?
Does this question leave you a little flustered? To some, the idea might seem difficult. They’ll answer immediately, “I’m not confident” and may have trouble even remembering a time they were confident. You might be bothered by the question, especially if you’re not sure why confidence should matter at all.
If that’s the case for you, perhaps it’s time to take a closer look at confidence itself. You might not have a clear understanding of just what it is or why it’s important. Confidence, a habit of confidence can prepare us to face an assault or attack.
Before We Tackle How to be Confident – What is Confidence?
When you think of someone confident, what do you see? You probably see someone with a certain set of traits including several, if not all the items from this list:
- They have a set belief in themselves
- Consider themselves capable of handling whatever situation they find themselves in
- They expect success when they begin a new task
- When they speak, they mean what they say
- They hold themselves in a way that looks natural but full of strength
- They seem comfortable in their own skin
- At the same time, they’re not overbearing or cocky in their attitude
- They take risks
- They don’t miss out on fresh opportunities
In all of this, you’ll find one thing linking all these traits: this feeling of confidence comes from inside the individual, not outside.
There is nothing in this world that can make you confident… but you.
Our definition then becomes straightforward: Confidence is a belief you hold inside of yourself. It tells you that you can handle whatever comes your way. In fact, this feeling is so strong it translates into a sureness of yourself even in new or challenging situations. We want to work towards being confident people with an understanding of the violence we may face – and be prepared in the face of crime.
The critical thing to remember is this kind of feeling doesn’t come without merit.
This has to be a genuine assurance, born of a realistic understanding of what you’re capable of. Confidence is strongest when it’s built out of self-awareness and experience.
On the other hand, confidence also involves a delicate balance. If you overestimate yourself, you can appear arrogant. If you’re underestimating? Then you become hesitant and unsure.
Confused? Let’s put this another way.
Confidence can be talked about as ‘owning’ the situation.
And that is a goal in learning how to be confident in the face of crime.
Think about the person who walks into a room and has the attention of everyone there. Not because they’re loud or brash but because they look so totally in the moment. A confident person has a certain charismatic charm born of inner peace that comes from being content with who they are. If you’re a confident person, there’s no room for the awkward anxiety we too often exhibit when we feel out of our depth. The confident person is relaxed and sure of themselves, and everyone around them knows it.
How do they do that?
How to be Confident -They Are In The Moment
They’re not worrying about something that happened 10 minutes ago, 10 hours ago, or 10 years ago. They also aren’t fretting about the future. They’re here, right now. The healthiest and safest place to live!
- They’re Not Worrying About You
Your opinions are worthy of respect. A confident person will take the time to listen to them. But they’re not going to care overly much about whether you agree with them or not. They’re comfortable in their beliefs, they’re sure in their speech, and the last thing they’re doing is stressing about whether they fit in or not. They’re just there, doing their thing.
- They Do What They Love
This means they dress in clothes they find comfortable, pursue opportunities designed to get them where they want to go, and have a focus designed around their own goals and personal belief system. A confident person does a lot more leading than following, and typically isn’t motivated by a lot of ‘should.’
Confident people sound remarkable, don’t they? But are they selfish? After all, a confident person is just out for themselves, right?
Actually, they have some pretty solid reasons for being confident. Keep reading, and you’ll find out why confidence is so critical.
Why Is Confidence Important in the Face of Crime?
In truth, confident people enjoy a lot of things in life that people who aren’t confident don’t. They’re generally more relaxed. They experience less stress and tend to be much happier than everyone else. Maybe this isn’t selfish so much as it is healthy. In fact, you might even go so far as to say this is the life everyone is meant to have. Let’s look at a few other positive traits that come from being confident:
How to Be Confident – They are Calm
If you’re plagued by anxiety or worry regularly, it might be because you’re lacking confidence. All these negative emotions are based on one thing: fear. Confidence is the ultimate fear-buster. Anxious about driving? The confident driver knows they are capable of handling the car under any condition and can manage even the unexpected when it comes up. Worried about finances? The confident person knows what’s in their bank account, has a good sense of when and where they’ll be paid next, and has a handle on the bills. It’s no wonder a confident person is less stressed!
If this was how you lived moment by moment – when the horrific and unexpected comes along, think how much more energy and brainpower you will be able to lean into.
Push Yourself – How to be Confident
In knowing they’ve accomplished things before (and they have), a confident person tends to look forward to the next challenge and the next opportunity to do something interesting. They have a tendency to want to see over the next horizon and explore more just to find out where the boundaries are. The funny thing? The more they push, the less likely they are to find those boundaries. This leads to exponential growth, which in turn, leads to more confidence. It’s an astounding cycle.
If you are already this confident person, an important project to undertake is a plan for personal protection for you and your family.
How to Be Confident – Set Bigger Goals
To a confident person, there’s not much satisfaction in doing what’s easy. They tend to set more grandiose goals, just because they’re confident they can accomplish them. These great big goals can be anything from trying to do something big in their careers, all the way to reaching scary goals in their personal lives. The sky really is the limit.
And regardless of where you feel you land on the confidence scale – making a plan for your personal protection in the face of crime and our violent world will be a confidence booster.
How to Be Confident in the Face of Carjacking
Many people think that carjacking isn’t as prevalent as other crimes, but actually, it is. Carjacking is just the precursor to something much more horrible like rape or murder, so you really need to take precautions against allowing you and your vehicle to be broached.
Be aware of the possibility that it might happen. Look around you when you approach your car in a parking lot or on the street to see if anyone is close by. As you’re walking towards your car, glance underneath to see if anyone is under the car.
Self-Confidence and Our Violent World – A Plan for Carjacking Safety
When you approach the car, it’s a perfect opportunity for an attacker under the vehicle to grab you by your feet and pull you down or worse. The Achilles tendon runs along the back of your foot just above your heel. If that tendon becomes damaged, you are almost completely disabled and at the mercy of your assailant.
Have your keys in your hand so that you can get into your car very quickly and lock the car immediately. Keep the car doors locked and the windows rolled up nearly all the way, or all the way when you’re driving. Whenever you stop, be sure that you can see the road between your car and the car in front of you; that will give you enough space to maneuver if you have to suddenly pull out to one side or the other.
Additionally, always check the back seat area before entering your car.
Carrying a stun device that doubles as a flashlight makes a quick sweep under the car and in that backseat easy.
Tips on How to Be Confident in the Face of Crime (Carjacking)
When you get inside your car, lock the doors immediately. Be aware of this as you are driving as well. It’s easy for a carjacker to open your car door while you’re stopped at a traffic light and commandeer you and your vehicle. Also, be aware of people around you while you’re driving. Even a rolled-down window can be a risk you don’t want to take.
If someone approaches you while you are getting into your car, it might be the best thing to simply let them take the car, as long as they’re not trying to take you or your child with it. One way to foil their plan is simply to throw your keys as far away as possible. If someone is threatening you with a weapon, you are entitled to defend yourself; you’re not protecting your car from the carjacker, you’re protecting yourself from the carjacker.
The one thing you should try never to do is let the carjacker take both you and the car.
If despite everything you can do, you find yourself in the car with the carjacker (now a kidnapper), some things you might try are to make the car crash by grabbing the steering wheel or attacking the kidnapper’s eyes. If you are put in the trunk, use your cell phone to call for help, or kick out a tail light and wave your hand through the opening.
Self-Confidence and a Plan for Purse Snatching
One way to prevent purse snatching is not to carry a purse or to carry it in a way that makes it quite inaccessible, such as wearing it under your coat. I guess if you are in a particularly dangerous area, this would be advisable. A better plan is to carry a personal protection tool like a pepper spray or stun device – and to know how to use it. And when I say carry – I mean in your hand!
Many women think that wearing a shoulder bag with the strap diagonally across their body is a good idea but, in fact, if someone grabs the purse in that position and tries to run with it, it can catch the strap around your neck. Keeping your purse close to your body and your arm over it makes it a little bit harder for someone to grab the purse. Also, being aware of who is around you is very important.
It comes back in many ways, to being aware and holding yourself confidently.
Some people think it’s better to just allow the snatcher to take your purse in order to protect their life. I can’t say yes or no to this state of mind. That’s a decision that you have to make, and that decision is influenced by a lot of different factors.
If the person is trying to injure you to get the purse, you have the right to defend yourself to protect against being harmed. In some situations, women make the decision that they would rather give up their purse and assume that the person is going to leave with the purse and not bother them further.
How to be Confident in the Face of Purse Snatching
If that’s the decision that you make, that’s a reasonable thing to do. If you decide that you want to fight for your purse, you should have protection tools and a plan on how to fight. An easy plan for thwarting crime against yourself is carrying and knowing how to use a tool such as a stun device or pepper spray. And when I say carry – I DON’T mean the bottom of your purse. Make a habit of carrying your tool in your hands when you are out and about. Additionally, be sure to do some mental and muscle rehearsals so using it comes easily.
You might reduce your anxiety about this crime by taking advance steps to minimize its impact, such as not carrying much cash and knowing the procedures for reporting stolen credit cards. Using a safety net like Digital Defense can really boost your confidence. If you have taken these precautions, it might be easier to give up the purse without a fight.
Home Invasion How to be Confident with Your Security
Home invasion is a traumatic, dangerous event. It is impossible to stop each and every incident. However, being prepared may allow you to avoid one, or even more important, survive.
- When answering the door, always check IDs first before you open it. If you have a window close by, talk to the person through the window. Remember, once you open the door, you have compromised your security.
- Always lock your doors and windows even when you are home.
- Never admit that you are home alone.
- Install a peephole in your entrance door to ID, anyone, at the door.
- Teach your children the safety risks of answering the phone or door.
- Keep a pen and pad near your front door. If you see a suspicious person or vehicle write the information down and call the police.
- Rehearse with your family about what to do. If you hear an unusual noise in the middle of the night like breaking glass or someone moving around, call the police. If you are alone, lock your bedroom door. Keep your cell phone in your bedroom.
- Keep an eye on your neighbors. Remember, no one knows the routines of your neighbors like residents.
- If you are living alone use only your Last Name and First Initial on your mailbox. You may also want to make a name up and put it on your mailbox to give the appearance of a roommate.
• Keep one light on inside the house at night.
Use common sense and rely on your intuition. If something seems suspicious, don’t rationalize, call the police.
If you were locked out of your house, would you still be able to get in? Maybe you keep an unlocked window in the back or a hidden key in your mailbox or on top of a window ledge? You may think this is a good idea, but guess what? If you can break in, so can a burglar!
One out of ten homes is burglarized yearly. For a small amount of time and money, you can make your home more secure and reduce your chances of being a victim.
Many burglars will spend no longer than 60 seconds trying to break into a home. Good locks – and good neighbors who watch out for each other – can be big deterrents to burglars.
Keep your doors, garage doors and windows locked
If you just moved in, change the locks
Keep your yard neat and your landscaping trimmed.
Leave your front light on at night or install motion sensor lights.
Your front door should be solid core (not hollow) or purchase a steel security screen door.
Don’t use the mailbox in front of your house to mail bills with checks in them. Drop off your bill payments at the Post Office directly.
Don’t hide keys in obvious places such as under the doormat or on top of a door frame.
Use your peephole before opening the door.
Don’t allow visitors such as utility employees unless they have proper identification and you have verified it with the company before allowing them to enter.
Disable and lock your trailer so it can’t be easily moved.
Lock and secure bicycles when parked- even if in the garage.
Any firearms should be stored in a locked cabinet out of sight. Remove a working part from the firearm and store ammunition separately.
Lock up your lawn equipment and tools such as lawnmowers, ladders, blowers, and trimmers in a secured area.
Check the locks – How to be Confident in Your Security Plan
Did you know that in almost half of all completed residential burglaries, thieves simply breezed in through unlocked doors or crawled through unlocked windows?
Make sure every external door has a sturdy, well-installed deadbolt lock. Key-in-the-knob locks alone are not enough.
Sliding glass doors can offer easy access if they are not properly secured. You can secure them by installing commercially available locks or putting a broomstick or dowel inside to jamb the door. To prevent the door from being lifted off the track, drill a hole through the slide frame and fixed frame. Then insert a pin in the hole.
- Lock double-hung windows with key locks or “pin” your windows by drilling a small hole into a 45-degree angle between the inner and outer frames, then insert a nail that can be removed. Secure basement windows with grilles or grates.
- Instead of hiding keys around the outside of your home, give an extra key to a neighbor you trust.
- When you move into a new house or apartment, re-key the locks. Check the doors A lock on a flimsy door is about as effective as locking your car door but leaving the window down.
- All outside doors should be metal or solid wood.
- If your doors don’t fit tightly in their frames, install weather stripping around them.
- Install a peephole or wide-angle viewer in all entry doors so you can see who is outside without opening the door.
- Door chains break easily and don’t keep out intruders. Check the outside Look at your house from the outside. Make sure you know the following tips.
• Thieves hate bright lights. Install outside lights and keep them on at night.
More Tips on How to be Confident with Your Home Security Plan
Consider an Alarm: Alarm and camera systems can be a good investment, especially if you have any valuables in your home, or live in an isolated area, or one with a history of break-ins.
Check with several companies before you buy so you can decide what level of security fits your needs.
Do business with an established company and check references before signing a contract.
Learn how to use your system properly! Don’t “cry wolf” by setting off false alarms. People will stop paying attention and you’ll probably be fined.
How to be Confident with Less Expensive Options for Home Security
Some less expensive options…a sound-detecting socket that plugs into a light fixture and makes the light flash when it detects certain noises, motion-sensing outdoor lights that turn on when someone approaches, or lights with photocells that turn on when it’s dark and off when it’s light.
Thieves Do More than Steal – Be Confident in Your Protection Plan
Burglars often commit rape, robbery, and assault. The likelihood of that is higher if they are surprised by someone coming home or pick a home that is occupied.
- When arriving home, if something looks questionable – a slit screen, a broken window, or an open door – don’t go in. Call the police from a neighbor’s house or a public phone.
- At night, if you think you hear someone breaking in, leave safely if you can, then call the police. If you can’t leave, lock yourself in a room with a phone and call the police. If an intruder is in your room, pretend you are asleep.
- A very good preparation plan for the whole family is to have one room (preferably you go to the children) to meet in if someone is in your home. Bring your phone and any weapons – lock or barricade yourselves together in that one room. Wait for law enforcement to arrive quietly, but be prepared to defend yourselves if you need to. Don’t turn any lights on – all this does is let the home invader know you are awake and where you are.
- Guns are responsible for many accidental deaths in the home every year. Think carefully before buying a gun or keeping weapons in the home. If you do own one, learn how to store it, and use it safely.
How to Be Confident about Home Invasion
There’s More You Can Do
Join a Neighborhood Watch group. If one doesn’t exist, you can start one with help from local law enforcement
Never leave a message on your answering machine that indicates you may be away from home now, say “I’m not available right now.”
Work with neighbors and local government to organize community clean-ups. The cleaner your neighborhood, the less attractive it is to crime.
How to Be Confident in this Violent World
Gaining confidence in your protection plan takes work, especially if you’ve only been working on it for a while. Be patient with yourself as you focus on changing things for a more confident plan. Like any habit, it’s going to take time to create the behaviors you want.
It might be the best thing to help you will be something you thought of while working through this list. Keep open to possibilities and remember this most essential thing…You and your family are WORTH the effort.
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