Not all women want to learn jiu jitsu, but it would be safe to say that a large percentage of women want to learn self-defense. The great thing is, not all self-defense is physical. In fact, self-defense starts as a mind-set, not on the mats . You don’t need to be young, fit, or able-bodied to be good at self-defense. You just need a few foundational strategies to help significantly decrease the threat of violence .
It’s helpful to be equipped and it will require a little forethought, but it’s well worth it. Simple things like carrying mace on your keychain or having a knife in your car are smart tactics to help stay ready in case of an emergency. Additionally, both of these items are relatively inexpensive, so you won’t break your budget just to gain peace of mind.
Have A Plan
A mentor of mine used to always say, “Make pre-choice choices.” This advice was for other life circumstances, but it applies here, too. Figure out what you’re going to do before the situation occurs.
Meeting someone on a blind-date? Choose a public place to meet them instead of being picked up. Whatever the event or outing is, think it through and stick to your plan.
Set Clear Boundaries
People-pleasers, this one’s for you. No, you don’t have to let someone buy you a drink. No, you don’t have to let someone in your home. If you don’t like how someone is approaching you, speak up.
Your “no” needs to be crystal clear (even when said politely). Do not feel guilty for implementing boundaries. If they don’t hear you the first time you say no, then get louder. It really is better to be safe than sorry in this case.
Don’t Ignore Your Gut
Be aware of your feelings. In so many cases women have often looked back on situations that have gone wrong and said, “Something felt off, but I ignored it.” If something doesn’t seem right or feel right, then don’t proceed or disregard it.
This can’t be overstated. Take an inventory of your surroundings often. Don’t bury your head into your phone constantly or always have music blasting in your earbuds on a jog. Know about places or people before entering into specific, unknown circumstances. Do some background research on that person before you meet them
Go With A Friend
It’s perfectly fine to go out and have drinks, just go with some friends. Have an agreement with some accountability- everyone goes out together and everyone leaves together. The adage, “There’s safety in numbers,” really does apply here.
While these tips don’t necessarily cover every specific situation that can arise, they do cover a broad spectrum for practical application. You don’t need to be an expert martial artist, but you do need a little bit of sense to eliminate the likelihood of an attack. Keep living your life, just do it wisely.
About the author: Mindi is a purple belt under Headnod HQ in Granite City, Illinois under Josh and Steve McKinney. She is affiliated with TAC Team BJJ. When Mindi isn’t on the mats, she is writing, working in women’s ministry, or across seas as a volunteer missionary. Instagram: @fomindi82