A Plan

Those 5 letters can make the difference in surviving or failing in any situation. Creating a plan will be different for everyone. The first step will be in accessing your own ability. This is why everyone’s plan will differ. We all have our own strengths and weaknesses. The plan must also include if you are alone or are you responsible for the welfare of another i.e. your child or an elder. Now that is the easy part, the plan will need to adapt to the changing situations. A plan at home will be different than a plan at work or school. A plan for walking through a park will be different than a plan in a crowded mall. Let’s discuss each of these in more detail. We all learned in elementary school that we needed to practice fire and tornado drills, practicing these plans are no different.
Ability: When creating your plan your own physical ability will need to be taken into account. The reactions of a 30 year old combat veteran will be different than a 70 year old who just has had their hip replaced. Physical abilities change a lot. You may have your plan in place and end up hurting your back one day at work, how do you adjust your plan. It is important to know that no plan is perfect. It is better to have a simple executable plan than a perfect plan that can’t be executed. Take an assessment of your abilities: What kind of shape are you in? Can your run? Can you walk? How much can you lift? (not barbells at the gym, just physical limitations). Can you go hands on? Can you see without mechanical assistance (glasses or contacts)? All of these will come into play when creating your plan. The key is to think of this before you need to execute. Don’t try to devise a plan during a situation, it is too late. There isn’t time when the wolf is at the door to think of how to react. Once you perform the assessment of your physical abilities the good news is that this situation can be changed. Practicing what you plan to do will put you in a better situation. The more you practice the better shape you will get into. If you have difficulty walking, walk. If you can’t move quickly practice moving and you will get quicker. Like anything, practice will make you better. Muscle memory is a fantastic thing when you have to react.
Protection: When looking at your plan, you have to take into account who are you protecting, remember you are not in Law Enforcement and shouldn’t be planning on how to save the world from a Paris, Brussels or San Bernardino attack. Your plan should be how to protect yourself and the immediate people around you that you are responsible for like children, elderly or the disabled. Like physical abilities these change. You may drop your child off at school and now your main focus is how to protect yourself. Later that day it is just the opposite. Defending one’s self is much easier than protecting others. You know how you will react, what you can and cannot do, when you add another human into the mix it is very different. The plan should not only include them, but they should be part of the practice. If it is a toddler or smaller the plan may be to carry them. If it is a small child then they plan could be “Grab my belt loop and don’t let go, stay behind me” and practice this. This will let you know they are there while you are able to keep your eyes on the situation. Older children or your spouse should be brought into the plan. Give out tasks, like “you call 911 and stay right behind me.” They may also need to grab your belt loop or purse strap. This is your plan, practice and make them practice.
Location: You have thought about your physical abilities and who you are responsible to protect, now it is location. This is where you begin to lose control of many of the variables. Up until now it was left up to what you can do. Now you may have to play by others rules that will again change your plan. You may choose to carry a handgun or pepper spray as defensive tools. Work, school or businesses you are in may prohibit your use of these tools in their establishment. Well, now what is your plan? You can choose to make your own rules and stand by the Constitutional Carry and say that a business cannot inhibit your Constitutional Rights. If that is your plan, you will have to fight that fight. Let’s look at plans that will not get you into hot water without a situation ever arising. Planning this has the most variation so it has to be the most fluid part of the plan. It may be as simple as “I am going to find my closest escape areas and stay close to them.” “I will not allow myself to get into the center of a large crowd where I lose direction or the possibility of being overwhelmed or run over if panic occurs.” “I will check the escape plan for my hotel room to include counting the number of door frames or door knobs to get me to the stairs in case of fire blocking my view.” Even if the location is familiar, what happens when the situation changes. “What if I am in the basement doing laundry and my baby is sleeping on the second floor and a break in occurs on the first floor?” I know most people will never experience an event that requires this, but listening to the news everyone always says “I never thought it could happen to me.” Remember, Luck Favors the Prepared.
Assets: This is what you have readily available to defend yourself. This may be the firearm that you carry, pepper spray or the backpack that you wear. As I mentioned earlier, this may be dependent on location. The key is knowing what you can carry and when. If you are like me and live on the border of two states and the laws vary between the states. Also knowing what can be carried and what cannot, in Wisconsin you have to have a concealed carry permit to purchase a taser. You must 18 to purchase pepper spray. Let’s discuss an earlier scenario. You are in the basement doing laundry and you have a sleeping child on the second floor of your home. You can hear that someone has broken into your front door between you and your child. Do you carry at home? Is your weapon stored in a safe upstairs? Do you keep weapons on each floor of your home just in case? Do you have a safe room that your child can hide in? Where is your phone? Another asset to look at is the availability of an alarm system. These are becoming much better and more affordable. The constant external monitoring systems to go to a central location that can send support if needed are great if that is in your price range. There are also much cheaper versions that you connect yourself and they only alarm, this can often be enough of a deterrent. Beyond your home there are other alarms, if you are close to your car, most modern vehicles have panic buttons, again just alerting others that a situation may be occurring. There are also personal alarms that give off a high pitched sound. In my opinion you can beat a little yippy dog. They may not off protection but do offer alarm. I have a lab with a vicious bark and a heart of gold. Remember that calling 911 should always be part of your plan.
Now is the time to educate, train and practice. Create your plan and seek the education and training that is needed to execute your plan. The most important thing you can do with your plan is to practice, revise and practice.
Cannonball Defense is your go to source for training and plan preparation. Certified training in handgun training and personal protection. Planning and preparation will be aided through real world experience and the opportunities for further training.
• Personal Protection
• Firearms use
• Active Shooter Training
• Prevention Planning
• Physical Security Upgrades
• Electronic and Computer Security

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