By Cranford Blackmon

It’s the holiday season,
And doop-de-doo,
And dickery-dock,
Don’t forget to
Do the things that’ll keep you safe!

Well, it looks like my holiday wish to be a successful songwriter isn’t coming true!  But I have another wish: it’s for every one of you to have a wonderful holiday season AND a safe one as well.  So as a little something for you from LaBCaF, LLC, here are 5 EASY ways to keep yourself safe through the glorious chaos of holiday shopping!

  1. Be safe while out shopping for gifts or groceries. How do you do that? First, try to park close to the door of the store you’re going to.  All the people constantly going in and out of those doors are potential witnesses and helpers, so it’s not a good area for bad guys to do bad things. An added bonus is that you don’t have to carry all those bags as far.
  2. Since I’ve mentioned “all those bags,” I want to remind you to use a cart to get them out to your car. Having your arms loaded with gifts or groceries means you are less able to respond to a criminal in the parking lot.  And, by the way, it’s ok to ask someone from the store to escort you out to your car, especially if you forgot to follow tip #1!
  3. When you’re walking up to your car, especially if you’re alone or with your kids, take a look around your car before popping the doors open. Start looking well before you get to your car.  That will give you space and time to react if something seems amiss.  Don’t forget to look INSIDE your car as well, BEFORE you get in.   
  4. Now that you’re safely to your car, put that stuff you just bought in the trunk, especially if you have more errands to do. “Out of sight means out of mind” is also true for things a crook might want to steal.  Goodies sitting on you highly visible front (or back) seat might tempt someone to just break the window and grab your goodies.  The trunk or back of your SUV will keep your things out of sight, and out of mind.
  5. Once you’ve arrived home, get some help carrying all those packages in. If you don’t have help, be sure to close and lock your door between every trip you make in and out of your house.  I know, what a pain, right?  But during the holidays crooks and thieves abound!  Don’t give them any opportunity to make your stuff theirs!

These tips don’t mean that you should be afraid or paranoid whenever you’re out shopping.  What they do mean is that the more aware you are and the more proactive you are in being safe and smart, the less likely a bad guy will target you and your stuff.  Remember, bad guys are kind of lazy, so they want the EASIEST targets possible.  Being aware of your surroundings is a very easy way to be a much harder target!

If you would like to learn more about how to be a MUCH more difficult target for a criminal, sign up for one of our 2.5-hour courses on Situational Awareness or our 3-hour course on personal boundaries and making your home a fortress.  They’re both fun classes full of very practical information that you can use immediately.  Bring a friend or family member and help them be safer too!

(Update: Some of our programs have changed. Subscribe to our email list to stay up to date.)

Until next time, have a happy holiday season and keep being safe!

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