Palesa Mashinini

Palesa Mashinini

About the Author: I am an advocate for personal safety, and I am passionate about all things personal development.

Personal Safety 101: An Introduction!

“Some things aren’t normal; they have been normalized. There’s a difference!”

Personal safety is a complex and sensitive topic, yet one of the most important life skills we ALL need, but as a society, we are honestly still at the beginning. Personal safety entails recognizing and avoiding potentially dangerous situations or people in your environment. So, what does that really mean? 


At Secanity we believe personal safety consists of 4 pillars: –


  • General resources (knowing your rights, education on personal safety as well as knowing which organizations are out there). 
  • The right mindset (consisting of e.g., self-love, personal development, intuition, boundaries, etc.).
  • Verbal self-defence (how to articulate your boundaries and de-escalate potentially threatening situations). 
  • Physical self-defence (using what you have and being able to protect yourself).  

Unfortunately, personal safety is mostly perceived reactively, only when something has happened do we tend to engage with tools and information for more personal protection. 

At Secanity we are advocates for “Preparedness is everything” as a mindset and that does not mean you, therefore, live a fearful and paranoid life, it means you are cultivating daily habits that contribute to more confidence, assertiveness, empowerment, as well as sharpening your situational awareness – enabling you to be more conscious and aware of potentially threatening situations. Owning and embracing your power as an individual. The fear of someone invading your personal space is scary, and the fact is, written words and reality are two different things. We just want to encourage you to try not to let the fear of what might happen to keep you from living your life. The thing is when it comes to an emergency, we usually are the first responders present at that moment, and by the time the police or help comes, minutes pass by. So, the question then becomes what options do you have in that short period to de-escalate the situation, protect yourself and escape safely?

Let’s take a quick detour into one of the subtopics of our pillars and get one thought pattern out the way before we proceed. 

When we think about self-defence or personal safety, many limiting beliefs come to mind: this would never happen to me, I’m careful, I don’t need that, self-defence is not my thing, self-defence is too expensive, women who learn self-defence lose their femininity, it takes too long to learn, someone in a position of trust must be a good person, I am not at risk from them. I am too old, unfit, young, short, etc. to fight back. I used to have the limiting belief that my brothers will magically appear and protect me. If we are out and about together, sure, it could work. In reality, though, I spend most of my time alone. So, when I started engaging in all things personal safety, I realized that we are stronger than we think and that we only have this one life (Sorry for being so dramatic), but the thought of being able to confidently have options to protect myself, gave me comfort and peace of mind. I am fully aware that nothing in life has a guarantee, but through this journey of getting a deeper insight into this topic, I now have a better understanding of myself and my boundaries – I am willing and ready, at all times, to make my safety a priority every single day.

Let’s pause for a moment and go within – scan if you can think of any limiting beliefs you may have around personal safety or self-defence? If you like, write them down, analyze them and see if you are comfortable thinking about how you would like to feel, and how you would like to change that narrative. Limiting beliefs is not an easy topic, but we will get back to that at a later stage in another blog post. For now, let’s try to write a fresh chapter on fearlessness? You have everything you need within you and that’s perfectly enough. Let’s normalize the narrative on personal safety and embody that we are powerful enough to protect ourselves. You hold great power.


Detour complete. Let’s continue… 

I think I speak for many when I say this topic per se is a frustrating one – on top of all the other stressors we face, we now have to also increasingly worry about our own safety. I think this quote from an unknown author visualizes this problem quite well:A man in a room full of women is ecstatic. A woman in a room full of men is terrified.” – Unknown

Millions of womxn and children live with a constant sense of dread and fear about their personal safety, which has the effect of draining them of their autonomy. On the other hand, women’s safety is a matter of context, and there is no one-size-fits-all method for protecting a woman. Our mission is to provide different perspectives, information, and tools so that you can put together your own personal safety strategy that works for you.  

Honing in on this and defining your safety strategy is not easy. We have a Personal Safety Strategy Template with a set of questions to help get the process started. Type in your email below to get your free pdf today. You will notice that when writing down your answers you will be able to better understand what safety means to you. 

Personal Safety 101 Workbook

Let us know in the comment section below what your definition of personal safety is

Thanks for being here and of course, stay tuned for more blog posts as we take a deeper dive into our 4 pillars packed with practical tips & tricks for more peace of mind. 

Sending you love, light, and peace.

PS: Your safety is non-negotiable. It is indeed all that matters. Give it all it takes to be safe, so you can focus on yourself. 



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