So You Want To Be a Prepper, What Are You Thinking?
Start With The Prepper Mindset
Regardless of your situation everything starts in that melon sitting on your head. If you don’t have the right mindset you could very likely find yourself less prepared than you thought you were. Prepping shouldn’t start with stockpiling a bunch of beans and rice, it starts with you taking an honest look at your situation and fixing it. The things you do in your daily life that could hinder your ability to survive any sort of chaotic situation.
How you prep and what you prep really depends on your situation. If you live in an urban area, or an apartment you might not have the room store 100 gallons of water so you might be better served preparing to bug out. If you live in a suburban or rural area you might want to work on your homesteading skills.
If you are in debt up to your ears or have a limited income (like most of us) you might want to take a hard look at what you need and what you don’t need, and what you can spend money on that could serve you better elsewhere.
Unfortunately preppers have this stigma of being alarmists who have their houses filled with MRE’s and Guns just waiting for the end of the world. As you know this is not the case. We just choose to look at the bigger picture, keep our eyes open and plan for our own safety and survival without any government assistance. Preppers and survivalist are not all about doom and gloom, we should all be working towards being responsible self-sufficient adults.
The Survival Podcast
I have recently listened to a couple of episodes of the Survival Podcast with Jack Spirko called “Holy crap, I just found out everything isn’t super” (2 part series) and I have to say, if you have never listened to Jack you should at least check those episodes out, he offers some great advice about how you should look at prepping as a lifestyle and not just preparing for the end of the world.
Jack goes into detail in the podcast about how and where to start you’re prepping but one thing that stood out to me, and I feel is overlooked is the prepper mindset. You can get all the information you want about how much water you need to store, how to purify it and what you need in a good bug out bag, but there is not that much information about how we should think as preppers.
This is the direction I would like to take our upcoming podcast, a direct and realistic look at the modern survivalist lifestyle. Its not all about doom and gloom, it’s about preparing for our future, whatever that may be.
Lower Your Debt
The first step you should take is figuring out what you do on a daily basis that puts you at risk. This could be anything from eating at McDonald’s everyday which affects your health and your wallet to how financially stable you are.
If you are $50,000 dollars in debt, you might want to solve that problem before you go out and spend thousands of dollars on solar panels, generators and bug out supplies. Getting out of debt is not only necessary, it is our responsibility. As he says in the podcast, you can’t blame your momma and you can’t blame Obama, you dug this hole yourself and you need to get yourself out of it.
If we continually buy everything on credit we are not getting out of this imaginary money market that we all know will inevitably collapse. In turn, that problem becomes our problem. It honestly might take you 5 years to get out of debt, but once you are out of debt, you can invest in your future, whether that be gold, silver or solar panels and taking steps towards living off the grid.
When you say investment people automatically think stocks, bonds and 401k’s. As a prepper we need to think the opposite, get away from the paper assets and move towards investing in your future. Someone who has 50K in a retirement plan could have all of that wiped out in no time at all. But someone who has invested in gold and silver will still have that when and if the economy goes to crap. If you can’t hold it in your hand, it’s not real.
All investments are not just monetary, if you spend $600 on a generator, home fortifications or even 20 gas cans to store fuel, these are investments. Think of everything you do as an investment in your future, if you cannot honestly label it an investment you should ask yourself “can I live without this?”
Ask Yourself What If?
Always ask yourself what if? This is why we prepare; we are basically our own insurance policy. We need to take our personal situation and ask ourselves “what poses the biggest threat to me and my family right now?” and “what if this happens?” We need to always keep our eyes open and our ears peeled because even the smallest inconceivable situation could turn bad in a second.
We get terribly complaisant as we go through our daily routines. We drive the same route to work every day, we stop at the same gas station and we basically have a schedule set for our daily lives. Because of habits we take mental shortcuts to streamline our everyday lives, but these types of patterns are exactly what criminals prey on.
If someone knows you take the same route to work every day and always stop by the bank on your way home, you are a target. If you go to a gas station and leave your keys in the ignition, you are a target. Even if you live in a rural area like me you still have to think what if?
My kids are terrible about locking the door behind them as they go to school because they think “we live in the boonies; no one is going to break in.” This drives me bonkers! And the fact is, it could happen anywhere at any time.
Something as simple as locking a door or taking your keys out of the ignition takes 5 seconds, and could save you hundreds of dollars, undue stress and even save your life.
Prep With A Plan
It’s always good to have food storage and a plan in place if a natural disaster, economic collapse or EMP were to affect your life, but as preppers we need to look at the big picture and take steps towards becoming self-sufficient.
How this all plays out really depends on your personal situation and what steps you need to take before you fill your house with 1000lbs of beans and install solar panels, if your house gets foreclosed on or you have to move, these mean nothing.
Start from the inside out, make a list for yourself and layout the path that is the most plausible and will allow you to reach your goals.
And remember, it doesn’t have to all be done overnight, prepping is a lifestyle and you will never really be fully prepared for anything, and fully Prepared to bug out if that becomes necessary.