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Your Appearance Can Make You More Vulnerable To Crime

Change your behaviour and appearance to reduce your chances of being victimised by criminals. Become invisible to bad guys with these helpful tips that anyone can use. Don’t give the violent element in our society the chance to decide your future!

Let me start with an example to explain this concept. Imagine 2 different people:

The first is a 40 year old, well muscled, 6 foot 3 inch man with a prominent tattoo on his right shoulder. He usually wears a leather jacket, jeans and black work boots. He walks around with a "don't mess with me" look on his face. He looks like he means business.

The second person is a 19 year old girl who dresses fashionably (as most girls her age do). She has a friendly look on her face most of the time when she's out in public. She's not very "street smart" or aware of her surroundings since she really believes that most people are kind and mean her no harm.

Whether you like it or not, these two people present a radically different picture to a violent criminal who is looking for his next victim. As unfair as it may seem, the man with the tough looking appearance will almost always be ignored or even actively AVOIDED by the criminal, while the young, innocent looking girl will be an obvious target.

Please understand that I'm not saying the tough guy will NEVER be a victim of crime and the girl will ALWAYS become a victim. The world hardly ever works in such a clear cut way.

However, there are certain clearly defined patterns that a predator follows when he is searching for his next target.

One of the first things a violent criminal will consider when he looks at someone is:

"Can I attack or threaten this person and get what I want from them with little or no risk to myself?"

If the answer is....”No” or  even "Maybe", he'll probably forget that person and move on to the next one. If there is any doubt about whether this potential victim could fight back and hurt the criminal, he would rather go elsewhere.

Where's the "Easy Prey"?

You see, predators are looking for "easy prey". They don't REALLY want to have to fight or even work very hard to rob you. They would prefer to rob a little old lady in a wheelchair than risk getting into a fight with some tough guy.

Their motives are "all about me":

  • "How can I do this as EASILY as possible?
  • "What's the quickest way for me to get the money I need?"
  • "Which of these people is the weakest, slowest and most sickly member of the herd?"

Once he's found someone who matches his physical type (weaker, smaller, injured or disabled), he will take a moment to see how alert the potential victim seems.

This is where even large, strong men can run into trouble. If you're not alert and aware of what is going on around you at all times when you are out in public, you are running the risk of being chosen by a criminal.

There are plenty of news reports about regular, adult men being robbed, mugged and carjacked. 

It happens every day.

What do these events have in common?

The victim usually says...

  • "That guy just came out of NOWHERE!"
  • "I never saw it coming!"
  • "It all happened SO FAST!"
  • "I never thought this could happen to me!"

Every single one of those statements comes from a person who was not aware of his surroundings when the criminal decided to attack.

Awareness Is What You Need

The key factor, once we get beyond your physical body (how tough or strong you look), is your awareness or lack of it. If you learn to be keenly aware of your surroundings at all times, you can spot a criminal in the early stages of his planning.

Quite often this will mean the end of his plans to target you. If he notices that you're alert, you see him and you know what he is up to, he will usually call it off.

He does NOT want to risk attacking you if he has lost one of the most important requirements for his success...


If he has surprise on his side, even the strongest, toughest man can be beaten. Surprise is an extremely powerful weapon in the criminal's arsenal. With surprise, he can expect to succeed most of the time.

Without surprise on his side though, his odds for success drop. It's often not even worth his time to try to attack someone who is aware...

...unless he has some other advantage (such as a weapon or a partner to help him).

So How Can You Change Your Appearance?

Your physical appearance is often quite difficult to change. If you're a naturally muscular young man, going to the gym and building up your strength and size is not a very difficult thing to do. I would encourage those of you who fit this description to do just that if you want to become a harder target.

However, if you are an older man, a woman or if there are other factors (like poor health or disease) that make it a little more difficult to make large changes to your body type, you will need to look at this from a different perspective.

When a criminal looks at your body or physical appearance, he will not only notice the obvious signs that you are capable (like big muscles). If he's experienced, he'll also look at the way you carry yourself.

Do you seem to have some kind of physical skill or even fighting skill?

There are hundreds of tiny physical and behavioral signals that we all give off that let others know what our physical abilities are.

For example, a runner or a cyclist can easily be spotted by looking at his or her slim body and well developed calf muscles. A gymnast or aerobics instructor's appearance is also noticeable in a slightly different way. A third set of signals are given off by a boxer or someone with real fighting skills.

It's these signals that give a criminal the information he needs to decide whether you would make a good victim or not.

A small, but powerful man in his mid 40's who has worked in construction his whole life gives off a very specific "VIBE". Such a man has probably seen his fair share of fights and is no longer impressed by young men trying to "look tough".

He simply IS tough and anyone around him who is switched on will notice this too. Such a man is VERY rarely chosen by criminals.


There are easier, less risky people out there to attack! Criminals are not stupid!

What I mean is that most violent criminals may not be "book smart", but they almost always are "street smart". Street smarts tell a criminal that if he tries to mess with our construction guy, he is likely to come off second best!

Is This Stuff Only Useful To Men?

I really don’t want it to seem like I am saying that only men have any hope of warding off criminals by means of their appearance.

If you are a woman reading these words, there are MANY things you can do. What follows are some ways you can reduce your chances of being chosen as a victim.

You can:

  • Become more aware of your surroundings
  • Improve your physical fitness (walking, running, cycling or doing aerobics)
  • Take up a martial art (like Krav Maga, Judo or Boxing)
  • Learn as much as you can about the way criminals think and how they choose their victims
  • Trust your INSTINCTS (I highly recommend a book called "The Gift Of Fear" by Gavin DeBecker)
  • Learn to be more assertive

Most of these tips will actually result in a change in your appearance to other people. For example, by being more assertive, your body language will change when you are around others. You'll probably stand up straighter and look people in the eye. You may speak more clearly and with more confidence. All these factors will help you to look and sound like less of a victim.

Criminals very rarely target people who are self-confident and assertive. They're much more likely to go after someone who walks with hunched shoulders, staring at the ground, trying to go unnoticed. Maybe most people won't notice them, but the criminals sure do!

These same suggestions apply equally if you are a man who is not naturally tough and muscular.

The important message that I want you to take away from reading this article is:

No matter who you are (man, women, young, old), you can start doing something positive to change the way you appear to criminals TODAY!

You may choose one of the ideas in this article, or you might prefer to start with something from another page on this website.

It doesn't matter.. long as you do SOMETHING!

One of the most powerful tools you can use to protect yourself and your loved ones from crime is right there between your ears: your mind. The more you learn about crime and self protection, the better your chances will be for avoiding a criminal attack or defending yourself against one if it comes to it.

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