People have this bad habit of ignoring danger signs. Women living alone or traveling by themselves should learn how to be precautious in times of natural calamities whether they are in their community or an unfamiliar place. According to Dr. Rick Nauert PhD , “When disaster strikes — whether a deadly supercell tornado, a flood, or man-made catastrophe — it is not just those with physical injuries and trauma-related disorders who suffer.”
In one article, I read that megadisasters devastated America last year, and it is about to get worse according to scientists. It’s the costliest year on record when it comes to the damages caused by natural disasters – storms, fires, floods, and heat – that is amounting to almost $306 billion.
Hurricanes alone claimed almost 300 fatalities. If we do not educate ourselves to be resilient from the disasters brought by these climate changes, we may find ourselves paying it with our own lives.
Optimism Bias And Ignorance
One reason why we lack preparation for these eventualities is a phenomenon known as optimism bias. We never prepare or become cautious about disasters because we overestimate positivity that the future is all about positive things and we tend to ignore the chance that negative ones might arise at any given time.
Sometimes, we tend to ignore warning signs because we don’t fully understand the severity of the threat, such as confusing flashfloods warning.
There are times when people underestimate the danger because of past experiences with alerts, like false alarms.
Keep A Watchful Eye
Despite all these, give yourself a chance to make the right decisions in case of real emergencies. “We can’t prevent the unexpected. But we can build our capacity, and that of our family, to cope,” said Marie Hartwell-Walker, Ed.D.
Educate Yourself. Be aware of what crisis you might be facing. Prepare and equip yourself with knowledge by reading ways on how to deal with such disasters. Some websites offer this information and what to do in case of catastrophe.
Trust Your Gut. When people receive a warning that they need to evacuate because of a potential risk, their first response is to call family, friends, or listen to the news, and worse, check if the neighbors are following the instruction to evacuate. This kind of thinking slows us down from taking shelter to protect ourselves.
Learning to trust your gut can make you decide faster and keep you safe when risks of calamity become a threat to your life.
Be Prepared Just In Case
- Be sure always to keep your car gas half full.
- In a convenient location of your house, put up instructions on how to safely shut off your utilities.
- Have a first aid kit.
- Place copies of important documents (passport, birth certificate, insurance, and bank account information, etc.) in a waterproof bag or container.
- Have an extra pair of car keys, phone chargers, power bank, and extra money in a bag and place it in an area where you can quickly grab it in times of emergency.
- You can also keep extra cash and charger in your car.
- Always have a battery-operated flashlight and radio-ready. Also, have spare batteries in case you will need them for more extended periods.
- Place important medicines in the same location every day, a place where you can easily grab them as needed.
- Always have a three-day supply of water and nonperishable goods.
- Never forget to keep the contact information of your family members with you at all times when traveling, so they can be immediately informed if something happened.
We all experience Mother Nature’s wrath. It is one thing you cannot avoid, but you can keep yourself safe from it.
Know your area. Is it vulnerable to a typhoon, hurricane, tsunami, or flooding? When traveling, be sure to always check the weather to where you are going.
It is not to make you paranoid, but nothing’s wrong with being prepared for the worst and keeping a watchful eye on what’s happening around you. As for Dr. Jerry Suls, a psychologist at the University of Iowa, “It was hard not to think about future weather disasters while helping with the cleanup in the following weeks.”