A life sentence is an overwhelming thing to face. Spending more than fifteen years of your life inside a dangerous place filled with different people and culture is definitely not one of your life goals. The worst thing is that no one gives you any guidelines about prison life. It’s up to you to adjust and guess. Thoughts like, “What would happen to me” or “What if I die inside?” would surely surface in your mind. The thing is, it will be much better if you have knowledge about prison life beforehand. These tips on how to survive a life sentencing inside prison or county jail will help you face your journey ahead.
First off, you need to be clear what being imprisoned really means. You are being punished for what you did. But it is also a means to rehabilitate yourself and become a better person. Incarceration is a consequence of your unlawful actions. You did something wrong and now, you are going to pay for it. Naturally, you will be stripped of some of your legal rights and you will be subjected to a completely new system. That is the point. You were deemed unfit to live among society and that is why you are being isolated. To sum it up, if you want to stay out of prison, do not break the law.
Prison life is lonely. You may have fellow prisoners with you but you can’t trust any of them. Never let your guard down even with the guards. You’ll be surprised on how quickly they will betray you. Do not trust anyone too quickly and never accept anything from anyone. It is important that you are not indebted to anyone. Do not gamble and put yourself in a higher risk of trouble. Always listen and keep your eyes open. Sooner or later, you can identify who you can spend time with and who you should avoid.
Know your place. Every jail is its own community and with it, there are certain rules that inmates should follow. Keep in mind that questioning them would be dangerous and futile, especially for newcomers. You will be ranked according to you were in for. Sex offenders usually get a lot of heat from other inmates especially from those higher up the chain. So, if you are one, be extra careful. If you are involved in a high profile case, you might become famous and it can go both ways. It will either help boost your reputation, or make yourself a target. Understand that reputation or “rep” is a way of life inside. Too strong and others might consider you a threat.
On the other hand, being a nobody does have its advantages. You’ll likely be ignored most of time, and that is exactly what you need for you to observe and analyze your situation. Knowing what you are up against is key to your survival. Be aware of different groups, their leaders, their allegiances, and their rivals. Ideally, it is best not to be involved with any of them. But in most cases, you wouldn’t have a choice. So weigh your options carefully. Understand what you are getting yourself into and make the most out of it.
In the meantime, educate yourself. Read a lot of books. Empower your mind with new knowledge and learn new skills. Being in prison does not mean that you should let your brain rot. There are law books available in prison. You can read and write to make your day productive or you can find work and have some goals. This will keep you sane and functional. It is best to spend your time in healthier and productive things rather than on gambling or drugs.
You should also keep your body in good condition. Stay sharp and be clever in dealing with people. Eat and do some exercise. A routine workout will help you during your stay. You should have a strong spirit and the means to protect yourself after all. Remember that bullies prey on the weak. Do not show anyone that you are weak. Be neutral and keep everything cool.
Expect that there will be violence in prison. Sometimes, you can’t avoid a fight and if it comes to you, you should be ready to fight back or run. Be alert at all times and protect yourself at all cost. To prevent being attacked, be mindful of your surroundings and the people around you. Make sure to be in a visible and public place to prevent being harassed by your fellow prisoners. Avoiding trouble makes a lot of sense but you must not let yourself be bullied around if that is possible. You must show that you should be respected and not be messed around with.
Be respectful to prisoners and guards. Be polite and say thank you and excuse me. Being polite will make your stay easier. Do not be loud or hostile to others. There is no use challenging anyone into a fight or confrontation. However, do not let yourself be too intimidated. If the others find you too timid, you will get run over. You will most likely be pushed into doing something that would get you into trouble, or worse. Show respect but you know when to stand your ground. It may earn you some rep point among other inmates. Do not let anyone have a reason to hurt you. Keep your wits about. Remember that everyone is in the same boat as you are. And that you are fighting your way to survive. This is the best way on how to survive a life sentencing inside prison or county jail.
Never ever lose spirit. Don’t forget to take the time to think and know about yourself. Accept responsibility and take actions to change for the better. Now that you know how to survive a life sentencing inside prison or county jail, have faith in yourself and humanity. Rest assured that in time, you will be free.