By Tess Pennington
Most people prepare based on their understanding of the emergencies that are most likely to affect them. Unfortunately, most of society feels that natural disasters are the only type of scenario they should prepare for. This misconception sets many up for the possibility of falling victim to the other types of emergencies that are out there. After years of researching and living a preparedness lifestyle, I can tell you that many factors can create challenges to how prepared you should be, and Mother Nature is only one of them.
When I wrote The Prepper’s Blueprint: The Step-By-Step Guide To Help You Through Any Disaster, I emphasized the importance of having a well-rounded preparedness plan that encompasses many different types of emergency scenarios. This essential survival guide stresses how important is to have an understanding of rudimentary skills and tools, and to recognize how important it is to look at past events that have crippled our society so that you can learn from them and become more prepared.
An Era of Total Unpredictability
If there is one thing we can say about our current economic, financial, social and political climate it’s that we have entered an era in human history of total unpredictability. Climate change, economic uncertainty, food inflation and an ever-increasing unemployment rate have created a devastating unpredictable chain of events, causing us all to tighten our budgets and pray for the best. The Prepper’s Blueprint focuses on the importance of keeping a vigilant watch for potential hazards that are in our field of vision. The only way to change how severely these types of debacles can affect us is by recognizing them for what they are and preparing for them beforehand. Some future events looming on the horizon are:
- Climate change – We have all witnessed the super storms, the tsunamis, and the widespread droughts that have been relentlessly battering America. Some are blaming harmful emissions and pollutants, while others feel it is from forced geopolitical warfare. Either way, the shift in our climate has created a food crises where food prices are rising dramatically due to shortages.
- Economic uncertainty – The Great Recession is acknowledged as the most devastating global economic crisis since the Great Depression. Unemployment, prolonged economic stagnation and price inflation are issues that can strike at the very core of a family’s stability. The sluggish economy caused many to quickly adapt to tighter budgets and now have less savings to fall back on. Naturally when this occurs, people become concerned with their family’s wellbeing and they want to protect themselves from the outcome.
- Epidemics – We are witnessing an unparalleled rise in infectious diseases. Many of these epidemics can be caused from poor sanitary conditions following natural disasters, such as the cholera epidemic that occurred shortly after the Haitian earthquake in 2010. According to WHO, the number of weather-related natural emergencies has more than tripled since the 1960s. When there is a sharp rise in severe weather-related events, there is also an increase in infectious diseases. Further, due to the increased consumption of unhealthy commodities such as junk food, soda, alcohol and tobacco, health-related epidemics are becoming an issue of concern.
- Political upheaval – Due to the political polarization in Washington, any form of progress has come to a screeching halt. To make matters worse, laws are being put into effect that take away the rights that have made America great. This is causing many issues with the political structure and if things don’t change, will cause this political upheaval to worsen.
- Societal downturns – Our society is in at a critical point. Social media and “reality” television have dumbed down our children resulting in a lack of discipline and an inability to focus on making responsible choices. Further, because of the need for two paychecks in order for households to pay the bills, the absence of parents present in the home are causing children to be left alone more frequently. This is causing a sharp increase in delinquency, teen pregnancy, lack of morals and low interest in education. The result is mob attacks, bullying, young single mothers and these things are causing our society to plummet.
Many believe these issues are the perfect recipe for catastrophe. While we can theorize about what may or may not happen, we need to understand that we are operating on limited information. Logically speaking, the best way to prepare for the unpredictable nature of these types of scenarios is by getting ready for them and making preparations ahead of time.
The following are ways to prepare for these erratic disasters:
- Create a food pantry. Creating a food supply is very beneficial to your budget. It is an investment into your future livelihood. One thing analysts and financial pundits agree on is that, in general, commodities will continue to rise. When others are buying foods at inflated prices, you will be consuming your investment when it was purchased at a lower price. Using a combination of shelf stable foods, you can create a well-rounded food supply to depend on when an emergency arises.
- Simplifying your lifestyle. Before you begin investing, take steps to get out of debt. Debt only enslaves you further, and simplifying your lifestyle can help break those shackles. Learn about these 6 ways to simplify your lifestyle.
- Preserve your wealth. Choose hard assets (dry goods, precious metals, land, livestock, skills, etc.) for long term investments so they will hold their intrinsic value over time. Holding these types of investments will insulate you from inflation and other economic issues. Further, by tying your money up in assets it will help you avoid spending the money, thus furthering your cause of self-reliant living.
- Become a neo-pioneer! Carve a path in your life where you are no longer dependent on consuming at stores to live. Garden and grow your own food, raise livestock, learn skills to live self-reliantly, barter for goods and services.
Which Choice Will You Make?
There are many potential events approaching in the distance that can throw us off course. We have two choices: 1. Ignore them and hope they change course, or, 2. Prepare for them the best we can. The bottom line is, there is no safety net for us to fall into when an emergency occurs. How easily you land depends on how insulated you were from the disaster to begin with. Which choice will you make?