Criminals don’t usually target people randomly. They take a moment to size up their target, see if they can take what they want, and evaluate the potential risks of a confrontation. When you take a few moments to prepare for your time in public settings, you can often stop criminals from targeting you. All it takes is being alert to the situation and aware of a potential threat. Most criminals choose someone else because the risks of a confrontation for someone alert and confidence are much higher than for someone not exhibiting those traits. Easy Ways to Defend Yourself in Public Settings The first rule of defending yourself is to limit the potential damage that someone can cause. If you don’t need all your cash or credit cards while running errands, why take them with you? Keep the items that aren’t required in a locked container at home that bolts to your floor or wall. Those steps ensure someone can’t pick up on your routines and steal your items while away from your property. Here are some other simple methods to defend yourself when you’re out in public. 1. Don’t Walk Alone Think about the various settings you’ll face when traveling in public. If you know there could be dark or isolated spots, plan to avoid them whenever possible. When you can’t avoid those situations, travel with someone you trust. Those that must go in public alone can wait to join a crowd to protect their movements. 2. Use a Hot Beverage Carrying hot coffee while in public can help you have a recognizable and viable weapon if someone tries to size you up for an attack. Even if the cup is empty, the visuals will often cause a criminal to move on to a different target. 3. Separate Your Cash It helps to keep your wallet and cash separate from each other. If an attacker demands that you hand something over, you can dip into a pocket for your throw-away money. Carry a couple of ones and a five-dollar bill to hand over, and that’s usually enough to let you keep going on with your day. 4. Keep Your Weapon in Your Dominant Hand If you carry pepper spray in public to protect yourself, keep it available on your dominant side for quick deployment. Always play to your strengths, especially when considering self-defense tactics. When you move with a purpose while following this technique, it will communicate to others that you shouldn’t be messed with today. 5. Use Space as an Advantage Most muggers use knives or other small weapons to take your cash and credit cards. These incidents often occur outside. The goal is to make you feel scared enough that you’ll comply with their demands. Use space to your advantage instead. Run away in the opposite direction of the attacker. This movement gives you time to get your pepper spray or stun gun ready. Once you show that you can defend yourself, the assailant typically leaves. When you show others that you know what you’re doing in public, most criminals will leave you alone. Invest in the best pepper sprays and other self-defense tools for those times when an assailant comes after you anyway.