There is an increasing need to educate the senior population in order to reduce their chances of becoming the victim of a crime. The following are a few ways to protect yourself.
Awareness & Personal Safety
Being aware of your surroundings is the most important component of personal safety. Use all five of your senses to keep alert and use them all the time. Practice will make it become second nature to you. Don't fall into the trap of being so preoccupied with your busy schedule, that you don't pay any attention to your surroundings and putting yourself at risk.
Everyone has personal space, which is the invisible barrier around you. When that barrier broken, you begin to feel very uncomfortable. When you keep a minimum of an arms distance from a stranger you can create a "reaction" gap. This will allow you more time to respond to a physical situation, if it arises.
Verbalization is a good way to let someone know that you need their help. Many people are embarrassed or don't want to draw attention to themselves, but your attacker doesn't want attention drawn to them either. Verbalize very loudly, ex. "LET GO OF ME." Don't just scream, let people around you know what's wrong.
Intuition is a built in alarm that we feel when something is wrong. Some people refer to it as the sixth sense. Always trust your intuition. Listen to your instincts. Don't brush it off as over-reaction or being paranoid. If something doesn't seem right about a stranger who approaches you, it probably isn't. Never give out personal information to a stranger even to someone who is very friendly.
These are just a few suggestions for seniors in your community to help protect them. People can be very unpredictable and hard to read. What works in one situation may not work in another. Practice these techniques, so you may choose the appropriate response if necessary. Remember your safety is what's most important.