Alas, that’s the common reaction we typically hear from victims of disaster.
If we’re honest with ourselves, it’s easy to admit that we all eschew the idea that we could get caught in the middle of a random shooting or a deadly hurricane or a terrorist attack.
That’s human nature.
The reality, however, is that these tragedies always happen to someone.
And that someone could be you or me.
The one sure thing about life is that’s it’s wholly unsure. Our existence is unpredictable; sometimes it’s even dangerous. But we need not live in fear of the unknown or rely on the odds that today won’t be the day that something bad happens.
Instead we can learn the SEAL mindset: Be prepared, feel confident, step up, and know exactly how to survive any life-threatening situation.
Former Navy SEAL, host of SpikeTV’s Surviving Disaster, and survivalist Cade Courtley shows us how.
In SEAL Survival Guide: A Navy SEAL’s Secrets to Surviving Any Disaster, Courtley provides illustrated, user-friendly pages in which he delivers step-by-step instructions anyone can master, including:
Here’s Courtley on TheBlaze TV’s Wilcow! show detailing some survival tips using everyday items:
In the following excerpt, Courtley shares how anyone can develop and put into practice a valuable survival skill he calls “situational awareness”:
In military-speak, situational awareness is defined as the ability to identify, process, and comprehend the critical elements of information about what is happening to the team with regard to a mission. More simply, it’s being aware of what is going on around you.
Because I know the importance of situational awareness during battle, I must admit I get annoyed by the vast number of people who go about their lives without paying even the faintest attention to where they are or what’s happening around them. It puts them and the general security of society at risk. These are the very people who most often get victimized or end up on the casualty list. The next time you go to a crowded shopping mall or airport, you will be amazed to observe how many people seem to be oblivious to their environment, insulated in their own world. As we will see, airports and malls, in particular, are two places where you should be absolutely vigilant and aware of your surroundings.
Of course, there are environments that require different levels of situational awareness. If you’re at home or at a resort, you should fully enjoy the peace and relative security these places afford. As you will learn, these places can be made safe and allow us to relax and enjoy life. On the other hand, airports, the streets of a foreign country, or a crowded stadium event, for example, are not the environments in which to take a mental vacation. You owe it to yourself to stay alert. Just like visualization, situational awareness drills can be practiced anywhere. Make it a game you play using the following checklist:
Situational Awareness Checklist
- Try to guess what individuals around you are thinking or doing.
- Look for odd behavior or things that seem out of place.
- Determine where you’d go if you had to seek immediate cover from an explosion or gunshots.
- Find the two closest exits.
- Determine whether someone is following you or taking an unusual interest in you.
Imagine this scenario: You see a guy at a shopping mall wearing a heavy coat, holding a cigarette with two inches of ash on the end of it, and he’s not inhaling. He continues to look over his right shoulder at another guy fifty feet away with a similar heavy coat. It is 90 degrees outside. If you practice even the slightest measure of situational awareness, this scene should set off alarms in your head. In terms of honing your situational awareness, you may find it helpful to think of yourself as trying to note variances against the baseline, or what is normal.
Check out Courtley describing the ideas behind his TV show, Surviving Disaster:
As Courtley says, there’s no need to be taken by surprise. No need to be a target.
We can fight back. We can protect ourselves. We can beat the odds. Because if you start thinking and acting like a Navy SEAL, and you can survive anything.