Prepper 101: Plan, Don’t Panic

So, you’ve read over the previous post in this series, or have had your own moment of realization of how unprepared you are.  Now what?

Keep Calm and Don’t Panic

Don't Panic button
By Jim Linwood [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons
That was my mistake.  Oh I acted calm, but inside I was flipping out.  Don’t worry though, it’s natural.  I spent nearly my entire bonus that year on prepping items.  Sometimes I bought two of the same item.  Unfortunately that left huge holes in my preparedness in other areas where my money would have been better spent.

But don’t worry though, panic is a completely natural reaction and will subside if you let it and let your rational thought take over.  How should you best do that?

Make a Plan

While I think it’s important in evaluating a plan, starting out don’t worry about particular scenarios such as economic collapse or a CME.  Begin by thinking about what would happen if the basic systems of support you depend on suddenly weren’t there and how likely it is that system wouldn’t be available, at least for a few days and what the impact of that loss would be.  Here’s a place to start

  • Loss of Income and access to the financial and commerce system
  • Loss of grid systems such as electricity, water, natural gas or propane delivery systems, telephone, cable and internet, gasoline, kerosene and diesel fuel, sewer and other sanitation systems
  • Loss of your primary shelter (eviction or foreclosure, natural disaster, fire)
  • Loss of access to food by normal means (i.e. grocery stores closed or shelves bare)
  • Loss of freedom of movement (quarantine, check points or vehicle problems)
  • Loss of police and fire protection
  • Loss of access to the supply chain of medicine and access to health professionals

(Feel free to leave a comment with the things I missed)

Where to start

Think about how prepared you are for a loss of each of those.  Are you prepared to lose each of those for a few days?  Then make it a week.  Got that?  Make it a month, then three months, then a year.

About the one to three year mark, you’re going to need to have your own systems in place and that’s what the supplies are for… give you time to get your systems productive if they’re not already.

If you take the time to build a plan, I will almost guarantee you the panic will subside and you’ll be better able to evaluate what steps you need to take.

But do something, no matter how small it may be.  Get a few extra cans of beans and a case of water when they’re on sale.  If you can’t afford anything, get creative like fill empty 2 liter bottles with water.  Just do something.