Prepping for Last Days, Doomsday, or Every Day
There are several things to consider when thinking in terms of prepping and survival strategies. Probably the most important is the view you have concerning the most likely scenario or scenarios that may play out.
Those that are religious or Christian, may be a last days prepper, being they’re preparing for a severe period of time when they may have to go underground to survive. Others with a more secular view, think in terms of extreme events that are catastrophic in nature, and define them as SHTF or TEOTWAWKI.
Finally, there are a growing number of people that are engaging in prepping more for everyday challenges that emerge from temporary or short-term events that are disruptive, but require a smaller amount of supplies to endure.
To me, the best way to build up your prepper or survivalist supplies, food, water and gear, is to do it under the assumption of short-term disasters, putting together things like medical supplies, food and water, and possibly, depending on where you live, a means of cooking if the power goes out.
By means of cooking, I mean like a wood stove that can heat and be used for cooking, or another type of stove that uses propane to run on. The key there is to ensure you have enough propane to last for a prolonged period of time, buy which I mean a couple of weeks.
Importance of alternative heat and cooking sources
There have been a couple of times when my family and I have went through an ice storm, where the weight of the ice brought down the power lines, resulting in loss of power for about 10 days. It was in the winter, and we survived because we had a wood stove to cook on and heat the house.
Fortunately, the cool weather allowed our food to survive with no loss. What we did there was simply not direct the heat from the wood stove to the area we had the refrigerator and freezer.
So when considering the how to of survival and prepping, having an alternative source of heat and cooking is vital to survival. We can of course have other food supplies that last for a long time, but if we have children, that can be troublesome if the situation is of short-term duration. The problem is they may not want to eat it, or get grumpy, which can heighten the tensions.
What’s a prepper?
Interestingly, there are a number of different view as to what a prepper is, and the different mentality and outlook between a prepper and survivalist. In certain circles there’s differentiation between a survivalist vs prepper.
The result is survival and preparedness is looked at from different points of views and outlooks as to what is going to come our way in terms of disasters and the possible collapse of society.
There are those that embrace doomsday preparedness, while others believe almost all of their prepping needs should primarily address issues that will be temporary. This is important to consider because it will determine what goes in a survival kit or bug out bag. It’ll also determine what your food supply list will be made up of and how long it’ll last when you build up your food storage and water supply.
Those that believe the the world as we know it will end, will put together a doomsday food supply that could last a year or longer. The same could be true of those believing current events reflect the end times prophecy they think are in the Bible.
Preppers or survivalists looking at extreme scenarios think and prepare differently than those that are looking to put together basic prepping supplies. They look at basic survival tools rather than trying to cover every situation they can think of that can potential come about from natural disasters or societal unrest.
Those with a short-term outlook look for key survival equipment that deal with basic necessities, rather than research doomsday prepping tips that cover the minutia of most possible outcomes. Survival gear supplies for them will be more medical, food and water, maybe a small firearm or two in case of the need to defend themselves.
How they define a prepper or suvivalist, and what they believe will happen, guides the strategy and tactics they prepare to use in case of emergencies.
Reality versus imagination
One of the things I’ve seen in the case of extreme preppers or survivalists, is not only are they prepared for almost anything, but they can be prepared for things that border on the silly. There are those that believe we will be attacked by aliens some day, and make attempts to prepare for that eventuality.
Others things of the worst case scenarios that can happen from event to event, and prepare in accordance with those possibilities. If some preppers think there will be an EMP attack, they will extend it to being something that takes down the entire global power grid. That isn’t going to happen.
The point is we have to learn to separate the extreme probabilities from those that actually could occur. For example, I’ve seen people that refuse to buy bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies because they believe an EMP attack would cause them to lose their coins.
Why that is nonsensical is because cryptocurrency, or bitcoin, but their very nature, are decentralized. As long as a computer or storage device has the record of the cryptocurrency transactions, or blockchain, they are safe. The reality is only a global EMP strike could destroy bitcoin. If that were to happen, does anybody seriously believe the loss of bitcoin or another cryptocurrency will be on the top of list of our concerns?
Practical prepping and the prepper family
Another thing I’ve seen that defies reality at times is the way prepping and survival is wrapped around the assumption there are no weak in the family or group preparing for a major disaster.
There is the ubiquitious idea of the bug out bag, which while a good one, assumes everyone can quickly gather together and get out of the area quickly if they have to.
The problem there is this: what if there are an elderly parent or grandparent that’s part of the family? Do you abandon them to their fate? How about there being an autistic person, or a physically disabled person that is part of the family? How does a quick escape from an area deal with that? I could go on and on with those types of situations.
What I’m getting at is most survival and prepper advice is based upon a very healthy and robust family that has no one else to care for or be concerned about. The prepper advice assumes a small and mobile family that can move about almost at will with no limitations they have to deal with. This isn’t based in reality.
It’s not too difficult to define the outlook of a prepper or survivalist and understand the difference between the two, but what’s more difficult is how to separate the reality of the world we live in against the world that is assumed to be there by many preppers.
The problem is many prepper and survivalist blogs or books make the assumption everyone’s healthy and able to contribute to the survival of the family. In other words, they’re usually written by individuals that have no obligations beyond themselves to take care of.
That means their prepper family is usually a family of one, or a healthy, young family that still has the strength to go rapidly mobile. The problem is there are millions of people that don’t fit that scenario.
Last Days, Doomsday, or Every Day
Not only do we have to decide what outlook we’re going to base our prepping on, but also have to look at what type of prepper starter list to work from. This will include the foundational or prepper information and top prepper items, based upon the specific family we have and the needs that are required.
If time goes on and our family situation changes, for example, a weaker, elder member of the family passes away, we can adapt our plans accordingly. That said, we need to consider the world we live in now, and the specific family needs we have if there are those that are more vulnerable to social unrest, natural disasters, or war.
We need to have a basic, but solid prepping plan in place, one which includes the development of practical skills that can be used for necessities that may arise. We also have to decide on whether we’re going to bug in or bug out. Bug in means our circumstances may require us to stay where we are. If they do, one thing to help alleviate that situation would be to have a place set aside for escape if things really do deteriorate to that level.
What I mean by that is we may have weak or sickly family members that require special care, and we may not be able to bug out quick and far. The answer would be to have a place fairly close that has enough food, water, and general supplies to tide us through a prolonged period of distress.
Assessing personal and family skills
One last thing to take into consideration is the skillsets you or your family have. It needs to be very accurate so you know the strengths and weaknesses of the family.
This is why one of my favorite ways to prepare for emergency situations is to go participate in family camping and hiking trips. Not only that, but use to trips for interesting ways to train and develop useful survival skills of the family that will be needed if things do go bad for any length of time.
Focus on the best survival skills, or most needed survival skills during these times. Unless you’re military trained, you won’t have the detailed types of skills that can be applied across the majority of scenarios that could arise. Target the most probable scenarios, and learn to adapt to whatever may come your way. Teach adaptation to your family be not giving them all the answers when training, but force them to think through the scenario being faced and the positive or negative consequences of their decisions and actions.
Work on the most important survival skills and survival life hacks, while teaching your family how to be creative with diy survival gear and survival bags.
For example, when out camping, teach them how to use survival camping equipment or any woods or outdoor survival kit you may have. Teach them how to use basic first aide techniques for minor injuries. You get the point.
First assess your family skills, and then work on further developing them and improving the areas the family needs work on.
The most important thing to consider for prepping and survival, even for those with experience, are to first look at your worldview in the matter. If you’re religious and ask yourself questions like “what will the last days be like or if what’s happening is the latest end time events,” you will prepare much differently than those that don’t take that into consideration.
Those on the secular level that thing there will be extreme disasters – whether human or natural – will prepare in similar ways, with the primary focus being on putting together an extremely effective self-defense strategy, and working out from there.
The most important thing to do is to know why you’re prepping, and device a strategy based upon that. That will determine what type of skills you develop, the gear you buy, and the length of time you prepare for.
If you’re new to prepping, the best thing to do is work under the assumption of going through a short-term, temporary emergency, and increase your skills and supplies from there.
The problem for many is they look at some of the people that have been prepping for years, and assume they can’t reach that level because it isn’t affordable or
they don’t have the room.
Bear in mind these people have been at it for years, and had to start at the beginning as well. Better to have some preparation in place if we face a difficult circumstance, than just to give up and surrender to what ever forces bear down on us.
Start small and work toward the end goal you have in mind. Just decide, based upon your personal beliefs or outlook concerning the direction the world is taking, what level of prepping you want to participate in.
Without that, you’ll just be floundering about with no real direction.