SportyBella Academy: Female College Safety,Help Prevent College Campus Sexual Assaults

Guarding the personal safety and security of yourself while away at college does not have to be difficult.  Most students endanger themselves by a reckless avoidance of learning about themselves as opposed to the risks posed by the environment around them. 

 

There are a wide range of situations that offer a variety of unique risks to the personal safety of female college students, which include:

  • Dorm room safety
  • Daily or nightly walks on campus alone
  • Riding public transportation late at night or the same time every day for a part-time job
  • Going out for a night of partying with other students where alcohol is consumed
  • Going on first dates with other students you don’t know

 

College students in particular often have a general feeling of invincibility when it comes to acknowledging the dangers they face and usually feel it won’t happen to them.

Enhancing personal safety on or off campus means you must be alert of,”numero uno” which is you! You have to be able to recognize potential threats and pay attention to body language of not only others but more importantly, yourself. Knowledge is useless, unless you take action upon it.

 

Here are 10 important suggestions to help keep your daughter safe while attending college

 

  1. Pay More Attention to YOU– Increase Your Alertness.

 

Be alert of your own body language. We use the word, ”alert” instead of, ”aware” because awareness can be in a passive state where as,” being alert” means you are in an active state.

Keep your shoulders back, chest out while making subtle eye contact with people that pass you by in addition to keeping your vision broad and external for people, places or things that may cause concern for your safety. Being prepared and alert isn’t about being paranoid that someone is going to jump out of the bushes everywhere you go to kidnap or assault you.

Don’t be so focused on your cell phone, book, Tablet, IPod or anything else for that matter that a potential assailant can sneak up without you knowing. Having awareness of oneself in addition to being alert of the environment around you creates confident body language which tells potential attackers that you are aware of where you are and are constantly assessing the risks posed by the people around you. It signals you are ready to act if the necessity arises.

 

  1. Your Personal Safety Program Must Focus On a 3-Dimensional Approach

 

Finding the right program or professional to help you prepare for the emotional, psychological and physical aspects of violence. 90 percent of personal safety is mental. So make sure your instructor educates you about the mental aspects of coping with impact, pressure and stress.

The best self-protection tip you can get is to avoid or escape a situation before it even begins.  If you find yourself in a social situation that is getting out of control you must try to verbally defuse or de-escalate it and as a last resort, attack your attacker before he attacks or injures you.

Your attitude and beliefs system determine the outcome. You must learn how to protect yourself and prepare to face physical conflict situations. They may never happen but if they do you will have the training to deal with them confidently. You must be prepared to fight and survive if your card is ever pulled when it comes to violence against you.

 

  1. Focus on Your Reason for Life

 

Define your purpose or your,”Why”. Identify what you are most passionate about. Define and clarify the reason you must prevail and win at all costs. It might be your mom or dad, a pet or best friend. Identify and acknowledge whatever it is that is so dear to you that a potential threat causes you to switch from the prey to the predator in a split second. 

Having a, ”Why” will get you moving when a situation first occurs, freezing means you have no options but when it comes to your personal safety, you always have options.

Remember these 3 Options:

  1. Think
  2. Breath
  3. Move

 

  1. Threat Recognition & Contact Management

 

Know how to identify things that could cause potential harm to you physically or mentally. Pay close attention to a change in the demeanor or behavior of people close to you, if you feel that a situation could become violent get your hands up passively to help defuse the situation and protect you if needed.

Quickly focus on movement patterns that do not fit into the normal pattern of activity and never take your eyes off of someone’s hands.  Eyes can’t hurt you but attacker’s limbs can especially if an attacker decides to go into his pocket for a weapon or just strike you while you least expect it.

When you spot a potential problem ahead of time – take action to avoid the threat and escape. Place distance between you and the threat right away. Walk fast, run, get into a location with people, contact a policeman or public authority, or get in a cab and leave the location. Avoid or escape situations that pose a potential risk to your safety

 

  1. Intuition, Your Very Own Personal Security System

 

If you get a queasy feeling in your stomach, pay attention to that inner voice that keeps telling you something isn’t right.

Look for and focus on the following signals carefully:

  • uncertainty
  • hesitation
  • nagging feelings
  • curiosity
  • doubt
  • gut feelings
  • suspicion
  • fear

Acknowledge the signals your subconscious is telling you by paying even more attention to the possibility that a threat is indeed occurring and you should take the appropriate action immediately.  Fear is your body’s way of protecting you and helping you survive by fighting using gross motor tools or fleeing the situation all together.

 

  1. Keep your personal safety simple.

 

Don’t make self-protection complicated with useless techniques that would never work in a real world situation.  Make sure you know simple gross motor tools as explained previously that can be used quickly and easily.  

Make sure you learn the emotional and physical aspects of violence, personal safety is more than the physical.  For example, if you have two women with the same physical skills but one of them doubts herself against a bigger, stronger male attacker; the one who doubts herself is now outnumbered and has the odds stacked against her.

Try to go over your personal safety in a relaxed state so you can have a mental blueprint of what you have to do if ever in a situation.  The more you train in your mind in a relaxed state the greater the probability of a positive outcome if you ever needed to access that information to win and prevail against an attacker.

 

  1. Don’t Rely on Cell Phones and Pepper Spray

 

The odds of you being able to use a weapon or pepper spray in close fight or threatening situation are slim to none. Don’t bet your life on any device except your own mind and body.

Learn the tools that will help connect your mind, body and soul when it comes to violence.  If you do need to deal with an attacker make sure your tools are geared towards an attack that is up close and personal.

Remember, your best weapon is your mind as well as the proper knowledge to get you home safe.  Rely on your mind to keep you safe along with learning the proper tools and targets.

 

  1. Online Security at School

 

Learn how to identify threats, viruses, and dangers to your computers and cell phone. Keep your computer security updated and fully operational at all times. Turn off computer devices and cell phones so they are not connected to the Internet when they are not in use, this is especially important if you ever travel.

Be careful what personal information you post online on social media platforms. Create and use strong passwords that are different for every account, even update these periodically if you can. If a system gets attacked, invaded or hacked, sever it from all your other systems immediately. Change passwords and credit card accounts immediately.

 

  1. Change Your Habits on Social Media

 

Follow these simple tips:

  1. Disable the GPS function on your smartphone so as not to let people know your location.
  2. Set your social media privacy settings so that you only allow people you know to see what you post.
  3. Don’t use the check in status function.
  4. Don't post where you will be or where you're going on specific dates or times
  5. Don’t post while you are on travel or vacation.
  6. Don't post personal phone numbers, addresses or e-mails on social media.
  7. Take active control what people see.

 

  1. Date Rape Avoidance Tips

Here are a few safety tips to help you when you are going out on a date with someone you know or don’t know no-matter if it’s the 1sttime or anytime :

  • No Means, ”No”-The most important thing you can learn is the importance of the word No.  Saying No and not using the appropriate tone or body language is giving someone mixed signals.  Your tone of voice can’t be one way and your body language telling someone something different. Body language, Tone of Voice and Spoken Word have to be congruous with each other.  If you are going to tell someone “No” then you better mean it. 
  • Set Limits- Set boundaries ahead of time and stick with your decision. Make sure you show appropriate body language ahead of time to make sure the tone is set early in that the opposite sex has no questions about what your intentions are when it comes to sex. 
  • Relinquishing Control-The key is not to relinquish control.  Rape is about 3 main things, privacy, control and a victim.  If you say,” No” to someone and mean it you aren’t relinquishing control. The moment you tell a guy no and then change your mind he now has the control over you in his own mind. If your in his apartment or dorm room, he now has privacy and you are his victim.
  • Trust Your Gut-If you are not comfortable on a first date, leave or make sure you get to someplace that you are comfortable and make sure that you have your own ride home. If you can’t drive on your own, have a friend drive you and pick you up or take public transportation.  The last thing you want to do is get into a car with someone that makes you feel uncomfortable.
  • Control-Don’t get in over your head. If someone pushes you to do something you don’t want to do, you have the right to leave.Stay in control. Alcohol is the most common date-rape drug. In fact, alcohol is involved in 75 percent of all sexual assaults reported.
  • Tell a friend-Always let someone know where you are going and always keep your cell phone charged just in case you need to make an emergency phone call
  • Distraction & Vulnerability-If your intuition is screaming at you that this person is going to sexually assault you and won’t take no for an answer then you have to distract him. What this means is play like you want to please him, get him to relax and think you are into him then injure him with everything you have.  This simple technique will give you a moment to strike when he least expects it.

 

Female college students are facing an ever-increasing number of personal risks. If you are going to enjoy your lifestyle at college, the best thing you can do is get trained and be better prepared to deal with personal safety in every reasonable way.

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