Improve Situational Awareness How To Improve It

Situational Awareness

Improve Situational Awareness How To Improve It.

It doesn’t need to be difficult to improve situational Awareness.

To improve situational awareness it doesn’t need to be difficult, that doesn’t mean there will be no hard work. Initially there are some simple rules you can set yourself. Such as

  • Don’t walk around looking at your feet, learn to keep your head up observing the area around you. Look Alert.
  • Don’t Use your mobile phone or have headphones on when out in busy areas/in public. Using them is an advert you have something useful to others and that you aren’t aware of what is going on around you.
  • Dress to your surroundings. We all like to look nice and wear nice clothes, but do you need to wear all your gold jewellery or expensive watch whilst shopping in the town center.
  • Plan what you are going to do when you are out. Know where you are going and what you will be doing. This seems obvious, but, when you are out look around and you will see people stopping and starting, walking backwards and forwards not really knowing what to do next.
Improve Situational Awareness

Improve Situational Awareness

These are four simple suggestions as you improve situational awareness you will create your own way of doing things that works and it becomes a natural way of doing thing. In the military and some police or emergency departments they are called Standard Operating Procedures (S.O.P’s) To everyday people it is your way of doing things that you use every time.

Skills Needed To Improve Situational Awareness.

There are lots of ideas out there that are supposed to help improve situational awareness. The bottom line is it can just start to get over complicated. If you want to develop situational awareness for specialist purposes there are ways to do that. To keep you are your family safe, there are three areas to concentrate on.

  1. Observation.
  2. Memory
  3. Practice

In the rest of this article I will talk you through some simple exercises that you and your family can practice together. It is fun and can help you do more than improve situational awareness. They can help adults at work, and learning new skills and children will benefit in all areas of their education. so here goes.


Observation is being aware of your surroundings. We are all doing it to some extent all the time. whether we are driving or walking. It keeps us safe. We have learned over time to let our brains filter out what we need to know. If we picked up every little sound or movement that went on around us we probably couldn’t cope with the sensory input, it would be sensory overload. So our brains have adapted and filter out what it thinks we need to know and we let it do this most of the time. Over time we have adapted to what could be called a safer world, we aren’t walking around wondering if a predator is hiding near by and will want to eat us for lunch. The bottom line is we have let our guard down. In reality there may not be predators out there that are going to have you or your family for lunch, but there are predators out there that will steal you wallet, cash, mobile phone, tablet etc, physically attack you, rape people or even terrorists who would like to see people dead. I don’t say that to scare people and hopefully most people will go through life without experiencing any of these things, some are also rarer than others.

One game that I have used and played with my daughter is a basic observation game. It can be especially good in the car. After I have seen something as we drove along I will then ask questions. e.g. what colour coat was the person walking to the bus stop wearing? What colour car did we just pass? what shop did we just pass? What was the registration number of the car we were just following? I am sure you get the idea and can think up many questions. It doesn’t matter whether you are in the car, sat in a Costa having coffee or walking through town. Doing this means you have to be observant to be able to ask the questions and the children have to be alert to answer. As I said I play this with my daughter, it wasn’t long before she caught on and decided to ask me questions as well. Be Prepared. Take a look at Our article on tracking and observational skills


Memory is a great skill to develop because it helps you remember more things, but you also have to be aware of

psychology of a survivor

What Goes on in the mind of a survivor. The psychology of a survivor

something to remember it. As an excercise to prove that people are not aware of there surroundings we had a random incident set up to happen in front of some new recruits during their first weeks of training. Our job was to go and try and get as much detail as possible from those witnesses. The differences in those statement were amazing. Some saw 2 people others 3 or even 4. Different coloured cars, hair colour even the time of day. These statements were only taken one hour after the event. There are two ways to start improving memory. The first of these is kims game You can find out more here along with a video.

The next method also helps playing Kims Game, word association. Learn to memerise lists of words by linking one object to the next. For example.

Monkey, Bubbles, knife, cow.

Imagine a monkey blowing big multi coloured bubbles out of its ears. As they floated away they burst and thousands of knifes fly out in all directions. They fly down hitting a herd of cows in the bottom, causing them to jump up mooing loudly.  The vivid and ludicrous story continues through the list. After playing kims game recently with a group of children, a child said they could only say one item. I went through the list like this and then he recalled all the items. The following week I surprised him by asking him to do this again. He repeated the list forwards and another child backwards without any practice or revision. Here are a couple of books I have used to help me remember various things.



There is only one way that you will improve these skills. That is by practice, practice and more practice. The important thing to remember is to make it fun. Playing games whilst walking through town or in the car are fun and you will see just how much you miss out on when walking around. There are some serious, and some funny things that go on around us everyday. Just don’t get your smartphone out and start videoing everything. If you aren’t in the mood to play a game and you have two children set them tasks who is first to spot so many cars of a certain colour. Use you imagination. Tony Buzan who is the author of these two books I recommend has written a variety of books relating to memory, creativity and thinking. He gives good advice in an easy to read way.

Check out our other articles on Situational Awareness here. Situational Awareness, a priority


Check out our Bushcraftf4kids facebook Page

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: