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After a Seniorpower workshop, an elderly woman, “The most valuable thing I learned was that our safety is more important than uncomfortable feelings like anyone being embarrassed, bothered, or annoyed. I wish I had known this sooner!

I understand, because I feel the same way!

As I look back, there were too many times in my life when I failed to take charge of my well being because of the fear of making someone unhappy with me – and too many times when I failed to stay safe because I hated asking for help.

Choosing to ‘Put Safety First” helps us in Creating Circles of Safety by providing a clear guideline we can follow in order to make safe, respectful, and wise decisions for ourselves and others.

Here are 3 ways you can uphold your own ‘Put Safety First‘ Commitment:

1. Ask yourself questions to put things into perspective. For example, “What is more important – not feeling embarrassed or staying safe?”

2. Recognize when you are using the Wishing Technique. You know – when you try to ignore a problem and wish it will go away even if you don’t say or do anything? Remind yourself that, “The Wishing Technique often doesn’t work! And trying to ignore problems because I don’t want to annoy someone or because I feel too overwhelmed is not Putting Safety First!”

3. Practice to build up your courage. Speaking up and taking action takes courage! Rehearsing how to pay attention, act assertively, set boundaries, leave an unsafe situation, and persist in getting help can help you build competence and courage to overcome your discomfort and take charge of the well being of yourself and others.

As International Child Protection Month this September comes to a close, we want to remind you that the importance of Creating Circles of Safety in an Uncertain World for our children and ourselves continues all year long. Please share these 3 featured FREE resources that can help friends and family.
1. How the “Boundary Bridge” Helps Avoid a Communication Breakdown
2. Assertive Advocacy Communication Skills
3. Triggers, Emotional Attacks, and Emotional Safety Techniques

And remember, our best-selling book Doing Right by Our Kids continues to be available on Kindle for only $4.95 (a savings of $15!) through September.

In case you missed our previous International Child Protection Month posts:
1. Creating Circles of Safety in an Uncertain World
2. “When Can I Stop Being Worried?”
3. Our Kids Need Our Hope, NOT Our Despair
4. Tragic News? Help, Don’t Scare!

 

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Kidpower Founder and Executive Irene van der Zande is a master at teaching safety through stories and practices and at inspiring others to do the same. Her child protection and personal safety expertise has been featured by USA Today, CNN, Today Moms, the LA Times, and The Wall Street Journal. Publications include: cartoon-illustrated Kidpower Safety Comics and Kidpower Teaching Books curriculum; Bullying: What Adults Need to Know and Do to Keep Kids Safe; the Relationship Safety Skills Handbook for Teens and Adults; Earliest Teachable Moment: Personal Safety for Babies, Toddlers, and Preschoolers; The Kidpower Book for Caring Adults: Personal Safety, Self-Protection, Confidence, and Advocacy for Young People, and the Amazon Best Seller Doing Right by Our Kids: Protecting Child Safety at All Levels.

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