At the ATM machine when getting cash, it means keeping a constant eye behind you so you can see any criminals making their way toward you.
In fact, when I use a walk-up ATM, I tend to turn my body slightly so I can use the machine and keep an eye out for dumb dumbs looking to rob me.
Criminals use an ambush mindset
It is hard to understand why we need to have situational awareness until we know how criminals attack.One thing that is very important to understand is that many criminals are ambush predators. You can’t be aware 100% of the time
Kind of like how a lioness will stalk an antelope in the tall grass, a criminal will lie in wait for you to pass by or drop your guard before striking.If they can’t ambush you, you’re more than halfway there.
Is there still a chance that a bad guy will make an attempt to rob you even if you see him? Absolutely. Criminals are stupid. But, if you see him coming before he knows, you limit the amount of damage he can do.This is one of the reasons why the phrase, there’s strength in numbers is true. Herd animals are generally safer for a couple reasons when they’re with the whole herd.
Yes, it limits the chance that any one animal will become dinner for Ms. Lioness, but more than that, at least some of the other animals have situational awareness.When one of them is alerted to the carnivore looking for dinner, it raises an alarm. Many times allowing all animals to get to safety or otherwise foil the plans of the predator.
While you can’t always have company with you, you should take advantage of it whenever you do. And, when you don’t, you should always remain alert whenever you possibly can. Which, ultimately, leads us to the next point—
Here’s the thing that nobody ever talks about though, situational awareness is impossible to have 24 hours each day, 365 days per year. It’s just impossible.
Right or wrong, we all get distracted by every day things.For example …If my phone rings, I end up pulling it out of my pocket and taking a look at it to see who it is before deciding if I’ll answer it or not. During that split second, my guard is down more than it would be during any other part of the day.
Or, let’s say I’m out at a movie. Once the movie starts, I have no idea what is going on behind me, or, really, in front of me either. My eyes are glued to the screen, only to occasionally glance over at my kids or wife. That’s a solid two or so hours where my situational awareness went out the window due to my distractions.
This is one of the reasons why I roll my eyes inside my cranium cap each time I hear or see one of these “experts” saying, well he should have kept his head on a swivel!
None of us can be 100% aware all the time. It’s impossible, but knowing that when we are unaware is when disaster can strike is huge.