Saturday, December 15, 2007

Don't let your emotions turn you into a victim

Last week while on the way to work I received a call from my secretary. She was a little bit agitated and stated she was leaving work because the Police Department had called her and informed her that someone had attempted to break into her home.
I asked her a few simple questions in an attempt to calm her down to open her eyes to what she may or may not be getting herself into.
Question number one was: How do you know it was the police that actually contacted you?
Her Answer: Well that's who they said they were.
Question number two: Do you have a alarm system in your home?
Her Answer: No, I live in a nice neighborhood and we've never saw the need for one.
Question number three: If you have no system then there's no alarm company monitoring your home, how did the Police Department know how to reach you? Or that you live there for that matter?
I could hear the breaks of her car as she came to a screeching halt.
You see, sometimes we let our emotions put us into situations that could make us victims. We stop thinking and fall prey to whatever feelings we are experiencing at the time and react with no thought process to guide us.
I remember in the mid 90's when I worked in L.A. as a Security Police Officer in San Pedro. Throughout the city they were experiencing car jacking's. The car thieves had discovered a new trick and it was like a new toy to them. They played on the victims emotions to take their vehicles.
It worked like this, a couple of car thieves would drive around looking for the vehicle they wanted to take. Once they located the vehicle on the roadways they'd follow it until they found the perfect situation to spring their plan into action.
Usually this was at either a stop sign or a stop light. When the vehicle stopped for the signal, the car thieves would slowly bump into them from the rear. Not enough to do any real damage to the vehicle but hard enough to get the drivers attention. What is the first thing we do when someone hits our prized vehicle that we love so much?
We get out of the car because our emotions (anger, concern, arrogance in this case) stopped our ability to identify possible danger. Once the driver was out of the car to check on it, he immediately became a victim.
Back to my Secretary, she asked me what she should do because now I had her attention and that anger, agitation, frustration had suddenly turned into fear.
What if someone was trying to lure her to her home? Possible.
I told her that she shouldn't go to her home without finding out if it was the Police that had actually called her. She agreed.
Several minutes later she called me back and informed me that it had indeed been the local Police that had called her. There had been a couple houses on her street that had been broken into and the culprits had attempted to gain entry into her home by breaking a window. They didn't get inside but in the check of the surrounding homes the police had noticed the window.
They got her number from one of her neighbors and that's how they reached her.
In the end all was well, but most importantly she leaned two valuable lessons. The first being to never allow her emotions to place her in harms way. The latter being even though neighborhoods appear safe that doesn't mean they'll stay that way.
Protect yourself, your family, your home or your business. If you're not sure how, ask me I'll be happy to assist you in any way I can.

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