In an emergency situation, it is important to understand what’s happening around you and also the natural reactions you are likely to experience internally.
Your ability to adapt both mentally and physically to a challenging situation is crucial to your survival.
Get away from immediate danger
Movement saves lives.
Whenever you are in a dangerous situation, getting yourself and your family away from immediate danger is always your top priority.
The people who panic and freeze are much more likely to die that the ones to move.
This is also known as getting out of the “X”. “X” being the location or the position where you are in danger.
One example of this is if the building or the vehicle you are in is on fire or filling up with smoke then you are right in the middle of the “X” and you need to move out of it.
This could also apply if you are being attacked, by moving away or out of the way of your attacker you are much more likely to avoid getting hurt.
If possible, take a few moments to determine the pattern of your surroundings and what is taking place around you.
Try to understand what’s happening around you, but don’t compromise getting out the way of immediate danger for the sake of understanding what’s happening.
Three Cs: Stay Cool, Calm & Collected
It’s very important that you stay calm and don’t panic.
To a large degree this comes down to emotional discipline.
Take a step back and detach yourself from the emotional stimulus that the current situation is causing.
Have you ever seen the movie “After Earth” with Will Smith?
In the movie there’s a quote that illustrates this in a more clear way.
Here’s the quote:
“Fear is not real. The only place that fear can exist is in our thoughts of the future. It is a product of our imagination, causing us to fear things that do not at present and may not ever exist. That is near insanity. Do not misunderstand me danger is very real but fear is a choice.”
In other words, you can remove the emotion out of a dangerous situation by understanding that you have full control over the creation of those emotions.
This is obviously easier said than done.
But you can practice it at a much smaller scale.
Next time you go to an intense or emotion packed movie, look for opportunities to detach yourself from the emotion of the film and look at the people around you.
The majority of them will be immerse in the emotion of the movie, while you have detached yourself from that emotion are much more suited to make a logical decision.
The purpose of this exercise is to realize that you have the power to detach yourself from your emotions at any time.
Developing this skill would be very valuable for your preparedness and it will maximize your chances of no panicking and thinking calmly during an emergency.
Assess The Situation
Once you have made a note of your surroundings, it is time to take note of your own physical condition.
When you are in an emergency or survival situation you must carefully note any wounds you may have and apply first aid while also taking care to prevent any further injury or harm.
Some of the questions you need to ask yourself are:
Are you able to communicate?
Is medical support needed and available?
Are you able to escape?
Do you have what you need?
What are your options?
Take Inventory: What Do You Have With You?
The next important step is to survey your tools and equipment.
Check to determine what is available to you and also its condition.
Ideally you will have your “on the go” bag with you and should have most of what you need.
Now that you have taken stock of your situation as well as your surroundings, equipment and physical condition the next step is to begin creating a survival plan.
This plan will focus on the basic needs for survival; shelter, water, fire and food.
Awareness is Critical
When you are in a survival situation the wrong move can be deadly.
This is why it is critical that you make full use of all of your senses before you make any move or decision.
Acting in haste can be dangerous.
Plan each move that you make with the end goal in mind.
Ensure you are ready to move quickly but without endangering yourself.
Use all of your senses to evaluate every situation by noting smells and sounds and being sensitive to changes in temperatures.
You must always be observant.