Hopefully, everyone who has gone to the trouble to get a concealed-carry license realizes the importance of carrying your defensive handgun whenever it is legally possible to do so. And we shouldn't have to explain the importance of having at least one reload on your person. We simply cannot predict when—or where—a criminal attack will occur any more than we can predict the nature of that attack. However, a pistol and one reload should not be the extent of your defensive gear. There are at least three other items that are important to your personal safety.
In my view, the most important of these accessories is your cell phone. Yes, I know that most people today have cell phones but they seldom think of them in terms of personal defense. Besides the ability to dial 911, your phone should be programmed with the various numbers that can be of benefit to you in times of emergency. You should have numbers for all of your family members, AAA auto service or a local wrecker and even an attorney's number. I also have my county sheriff's cell phone number programmed into mine. And, for goodness sake, keep that phone with you at all times. Leaving your phone on your car seat while an active-shooter incident goes down in your office building is the same as not even having a cell phone.
The second most important defensive item is a high-intensity flashlight. It is a simple fact that most criminal attacks occur in low-light situations. You need to be able to see the threat, and positively identify it as such, before you take defensive action. The high-intensity light can also be used to disorient your attacker, giving you time to effect a proper response. I like a small, one-battery unit because it is easier to carry on my person and generally use the SureFire Backup. However, lately, I've been working with a small light from the good folks at Olight. Get a good one; they last and are virtually indestructible.
And the final piece of defensive gear is a good knife. Now, it doesn't have to be one of those serious looking combat knives. A modest lockblade will do just fine. I like one with a blade of good quality that is 3 to 4 inches in length. I've never had to fight with a knife and you probably won't either. But I have used them to cut seat belts when helping people out of wrecked cars along with numerous other more utilitarian chores. And, by all means, take the time to keep your knife sharp. A dull knife is just another piece of metal.
So here are three very handy items that will compliment your defensive plan. I don't really care how or where they are carried as long as they are on the person and readily available. Communications, a light source and an age-old utility tool. They really beef up a defensive plan.