12 Red Flags
Twelve Red Flags Everyone should be Aware of
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1. Your “gut” or intuition may identify a threat: This is the first and most important red flag. Trust your intuition to identify a threat but do not necessarily trust your instincts to determine your response.
2. Something doesn’t feel right: When your intuition tells you something isn’t right, it isn’t. Immediately engage your mindset, awareness, and tactics despite your inability to understand what exactly “doesn’t feel right.” Your intuition will likely identify a threat before your mind can process it.
3. Creating a false sense of unity or familiarity: Speaking to you as if you are a team or somehow operating together as in, “We can do this.” Or speaking to you as though you know each other better than you do, referencing your personal life or creating a false history, as in “I met you at a party last month.”
4. False need to be rescued: Being asked to rescue someone from a “crisis.” Ask yourself if this person is in a real crisis and if you are the person to help.
5. Physical or verbal boundary breakers: Ignoring a “No” statement, standing too close, failing to leave when asked, or any attempt to ignore the boundaries you’ve established. Having “Drawn the line” prior to the incident will expedite your ability to notice the violation of your boundary and allow you to react faster.
6. Attempts to shame or guilt: Negative statements tend to make people feel guilty or act in a way to disprove the allegation. Know this is intentionally deceptive. Any effort to deceive or manipulate should immediately raise your guard. “I thought lawyers were supposed to help people,” “Are you too busy to help me, I’m scared.”
7. Unsolicited promises: “You don’t have to worry, I’ll take care of you.” “You are safe with me.” Ask yourself, Why would he/she say this? Why or how am I safe with this person? Predators give away their intentions to harm when they try to calm your fear by promising safety.
8. Emotional pleas: An attempt to manipulate or control using emotional statements. I’m scared. I’m upset. I’m hurting.
9. Lying: Listen for the other person to try to convince you something is true, especially if using too many details. Any lie is a red flag.
10. Inconsistency: Pay attention to words and actions in the context of the situation. Are they consistent? If not, put your guard up.
11. Behavior inappropriate to the situation/context: Watch for behavior that may seem odd, exaggerated, or not the norm for the situation.
12. Too helpful: Being overly helpful may be a way of gaining some form of leverage or to make you feel as if you now “owe” them something.