Every day, we watch the news only to see that there has been another tragedy. We sympathize with the victims and move on with our lives. What escapes us is the fact that those victims were just as ordinary as anyone else. We think that something like that can never happen to us. Personal safety is all about breaking that illusion and taking the initiative to lead a life that can give you more certainty about your safety.
Personal safety is not just about physical well-being. It also means knowing what’s detrimental to your mental health and then avoiding it. Personal safety is necessary because it results in overall good health, less stress, and protection against any injury or illness.
Examples of Personal Safety
There are many examples of personal safety, and different situations have different guides that we must follow. For example, if you are on the street, then some personal safety precautions might be to secure your purse and wallet while walking and be aware of anyone suspicious around you. Another example can be a situation in which you are waiting for a bus. In this case, you might be advised to avoid isolated bus stops at night to adhere to personal safety.
You might think that all of this is common sense, and everyone follows personal safety because it comes instinctively. However, smoking and alcohol consumption is contrary to personal safety. Yet, more than 15% of global deaths are attributed to smoking. The packaging itself warns us of lung cancer, but most adults ignore that even after knowing the consequences. Personal safety might be evolutionary, instinctive, and common sense, but the fact is that we largely ignore it in our daily lives.
Also Read – WAYS TO TEACH CHILDREN RESPONSIBILITY
Personal Safety for Kids
Now that we have established that personal safety has eluded us, adults, by a long margin, let’s at least try to avoid that from happening with the next generation. Personal Safety for kids is very crucial for their developing minds. Studies show that if kids are taught personal safety from the start, then it stays with them throughout adulthood. It gets internalized and becomes part of their behavior and values. Everyone teaches their kid to be kind and polite to others, but almost no one explicitly teaches them that being kind to themselves is also crucial. Taking care of oneself is what personal safety is all about, and teaching it should be prioritized for kids.
Why is it important to teach Personal Safety to kids?
It is very important to teach personal safety to kids. Studies show that when kids are aware of their safety, it
- Reduces the probability of a kid getting into dangerous situations.
- Teaches them how to sense and act in vulnerable situations.
- Boosts a child’s self-confidence that in turn gives them strength.
- Increases their understanding of values and rights. In other words, they will learn what to expect from people around them, and they will know their human rights.
- Gives them the freedom and comfort to speak out if something wrong is happening with them. Oftentimes, children with no understanding of personal safety fail to report criminal behavior because they don’t understand that what’s happening is wrong.
- Allows them to feel secure and build trust after much analysis.
- Warns them if someone is trying to provoke or bully them.
- Grooms them to trust their instincts and reflexes.
Steps that kids can follow for personal safety
Parents need to teach their children what steps they can follow for personal safety. It is important that they find it interesting and fun. Kids have a fickle mind, and most of the time they will not listen to anything. Therefore, personal safety should be a process with a learning curve involved. A 3-day workshop or a lesson that happens once in a blue moon is not an optimal solution. Here are some of the steps that you can teach your kids:
Step 1: Tell them to differentiate their positive and negative feelings by assigning a “yes” and “no” term to them.
Step 2: Tell them that if they feel fear or danger from anyone, then it is okay to just say “NO” to them. Even if that person is an adult. We teach children to respect adults, but it is vital that we teach them to say “No” to them if they sense danger.
Step 3: Tell them to be comfortable with their bodies. Insecurity doesn’t take time to grow. School children fall victim to it because no one tells them that they have the right to be comfortable in their bodies.
Step 4: Tell them that if anything bad happens for any reason ( even if whatever happened was their fault ), then tell someone trustworthy about it.
Step 5: Tell them to stay away from people and situations that are dangerous and unsafe.
None of these steps will make sense to them at first, but a progressive teaching approach will do wonders in the long-run
What can parents do for their Kids’ Personal Safety?
Kids benefit the most from experiential learning. Here are some things that parents can do for their personal safety
Role-Play: Act it out. Children have more visual memory than any other type of memory. If they are shown how to act in a sticky situation via a roleplay, they will mimic that if something similar happens in real life.
Talk about their day daily: This simple thing might be the single most important thing for a kid’s safety. Communication is very important. Your children will confide in you if you talk to them daily.
Observe any changes in behavior: Visual cues. Parents know when their child is stressed. All you have to do is observe them. If anything feels off then find a way to confront them without scaring them.
Monitor their online presence. Cyber Safety is important: Today everybody is online. Even children. You must educate them about cybercrimes and online hate. Most parents lose their child’s trust by invading their privacy. Instead, talk to them about it. It is important to tell them about the consequences of being ignorant online.
Read More – Benefits of Social Interaction for Students
To conclude, there is not just one type of personal safety technique. Kids are vulnerable to a lot of things. Some of those things are Insecurity, Injury due to fights, Stress, Anxiety, Pedophilia, etc. So, it is important to sow the seed of personal safety from the start.