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  • Mike L

By The Numbers

Updated: Jan 5

Make the decision to be better prepared for the expected as well as the unexpected. If possible and practical, involve your spouse, family, wingman/woman/person. If not, revisit this later and keep it moving. You can’t prepare for every eventuality; however, you can give yourself a safety net for difficult times. Even though you plan and prepare, you can and likely will still be significantly impacted by any number of events from personal crises to natural disasters. Planning makes you more resilient.  (Read the post Community Building)

1. Decide what you’re preparing for; extreme weather events; power outage; isolation with limited access to up-to-date information, services, and resources, etc. Additionally, carefully account for the food you eat and drink, and the resources you use daily. (Hint: I just spelled out the sequence of events following many extreme weather events!) This is your needs analysis and the beginning of your emergency plan. Your emergency plan will evolve over time and should be updated after an event. (Read the post How I Got Ready)

2. Take a full inventory of what you already have on hand. (Tip: Download the Hidden Cache Prepper Emergency Supply Checklist- Home, as your guide.) Record your notes in a notebook that you will use as your prepping notebook. Use it to jot down notes; names of equipment, gear, and prepping resources; Budget for the larger items you need to buy such as a solar generator, freezer, etc.

3. Based upon what you already have, review the checklist, then organize your supplies using storage bins that you label. Be sure to allow for quick, easy access to things such as flashlights, portable generators, First Aid Kits and so on. This is also a good time to copy and back up important documents such as prescriptions, important phone numbers, account numbers and passwords, insurance cards, driver’s licenses, Social Security cards and birth certificates. (Read the post Important Documents.) At this point, you’re looking to refine your emergency plan.

4. Based upon what you already have, set aside food and water. Condition yourself to make additions to your long-term pantry with every trip to the grocery store or home improvement center. Watch the sales and time your big purchases accordingly. Freeze dried and dehydrated meal kits are costly but you get multiple meals for a family of four with shelf lives of up to thirty years! They’re must-haves for your LTP. Cheap and utility are incompatible. Watch the sales and don’t try to build a comprehensive kit for pennies. It won’t work and worse, you’re possibly placing your safety at risk.   

5. Empty your pockets/purse of all spare change and small bills. While you’re at it, look under the cushions of the couch, too. This will be the start of your cash cache. Place it in a jar, closet safe or wherever you think is most appropriate. Make regular contributions until you reach your goal of $3,000. Remember, this doesn’t have to be a sprint. Take your time, if necessary, and remember, this money is for emergencies, only. This is dollar amount is a guide. Everyone’s situation is different so you may need to set aside less cash. (Read the post Easing the Pinch.)

6. Now would be a good time to reengage your friends and family to discuss prepping. Within the context of current disasters, discuss how you’d manage if “X” happened to you. You’re looking for buy in and receptivity. If it’s still not there, don’t be discouraged and above all, keep it moving.  

7. Consider getting training in First Aid and CPR. Many park districts, community centers and fire departments offer these classes at no cost or for a nominal fee. Volunteering with the Red Cross, Salvation Army and your local CERT organization are excellent ways to enhance your skill set while building a network of likeminded individuals. (Read the post Care and Assistance at Home.)

8.  Review your needs and hazard analyses. Be sure that you’ve accounted for medical conditions and special needs, cultural and religious considerations, and anything else that would be a factor in quickly getting back on your feet. (Read the post Why Bother with Prepping.)  

9.  I’m going to take the opportunity once again to encourage you to build a network. We all need the company and support of others, especially in times of crisis. Coworkers, neighbors, fellow churchgoers, friends, and family. Look at whom you already know before you start approaching random strangers. Not everyone sees value in or a reason to prepare for the unknown and uncertain. If they’re not there yet, it’s not an indictment against them or you. We’re all different and in different places in our lives.

I’m also going to caution you to be careful regarding what you say and to whom you say it when it comes to the nature and extent of your preps. Many would be very comfortable rebuffing your advice to set aside supplies for later, but the same people would be the first to come calling for help or a handout. They may even be intent upon taking it whether you offer it or not. (Read the post Operational Security.)

10. Review your communication and emergency plans. Test them to ensure not only that they’re viable but that you and others in the family and network can do what you think you’re capable of doing when SHTF. (Read Gloom and Doom.)

11. Have a Go Bag/ Bug Out Bag ready in case you need to leave your home quickly. (Download the Bug Out Bag Checklist.) If you’re evacuating via car, you can take far more than you’d be able to carry on your back. Be selective and don’t waste valuable space on nonessentials.

12. Believe in and be fully committed to what you’re doing. Help is not always readily available and one day it may not come. At best, your actions can lessen the severity of a crisis and jumpstart your recovery from a disaster. At worst, the life saved may be yours or that of a loved one. Even if you're never tested or called to action, the effort itself is worth it. (Read the post Head Games.)

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6 comentarios

09 ene

Thanks for sharing, the more I read your posts the more I feel it's time to prep more often. I've also started prepping for myself and my family incase the worst were to happen. I'm currently researching solar powered generators for our home. Whenever I go to stores I make sure I grab some canned foods here and there, it adds up to our just in case storage of foods.. Your can never be too prepared if the worse were to come for yourself and your family.

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Mike L
09 ene
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Thanks for visiting my site and for sharing your thoughts with me and others. You've moved from the thinking and reading phase to taking definitive action regularly. Well done! I've updated the site with a page of Checklists. Download the PDF and use it as a guide to focus your efforts and ensure you're covering all of the bases. When you're able, involve your family, you'll be amazed at how quickly your preps will grow.

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28 dic 2023

I really l like what you're saying about importance of community. It sounds like you know just how difficult it is. I'm having a hard time with my extended family not understanding how important it is. You say, "keep it moving" but what does that mean? What does it look like? I Would like to hear what others have to say about it.

Good work!

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Mike L
02 ene
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Thank you for visiting my site and for sharing your thoughts with me and others. I've been prepping for about five years and there's a universe of things I have and want to learn. It sounds like you're well on your way to becoming better prepared and that's what counts.

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