When you’re new to preparedness things can seem overwhelming, with tons of information about how to be a perfect prepper. However, in most cases preparedness is pretty simple for the most part, with only a few things to watch out for particularly when you’re just starting out. These tips are intended to help you get on the right path for preparedness and avoid some of the more common mistakes that you might later regret.
1. Read books, blogs, and get practical advice before you get into anything complicated
This alone easily eliminates most of the major mistakes I made as I was getting started. Generally speaking, reading the experiences and advice of people who’ve been there and doing what you’re trying to get into will cover some of those “oh, right I forgot this ” moments!
For example, if you’re looking to build a structure outside try looking at youtube and see how several different people built their version of your shed, greenhouse, chicken coup etc. Listen for side comments about things they should have avoided or fixes they had to apply later, and try to apply that to your specific situation.
2. Remember what is most important: Water, Food, Weapons, Shelter
Preparedness is no different from any other market. There are people who make and market an endless array of shiny new preparedness products that all seem so useful…but if you buy all of the fun gadgets you’ll be left without money for food or water! The fanciest knife/trenching shovel/ surgical tool set won’t do you much good without a way to get clean, drinkable water when you’ll need it most. Try to focus your funds on things that are strictly necessary for survival at first, then expand into useful or comfort items that will make that survival easier.
3. Remember that preparedness can be fun!
I’ve mentioned this previously, but preparedness should not be cause for moping about all the time and stoically waiting for the inevitable. If you can’t enjoy life now, then what is the point of trying to gather all of this stuff? Will you truly be more happy after a major disaster occurs, even if you are prepared for it? Be content with the fact that you have at least some of what you will need to survive and remember to enjoy the life you have!
4. You won’t make it alone, so make a point of trying to find some like-minded friends
One key point about preparedness is that you really need to have others to help you, since there is a strength in numbers that no amount of supplies and weapons can compensate for. It can take time to develop relationships with people, so while you’re still beginning you should put out some feelers towards people you think might be open-minded about working with you. Remember to be somewhat circumspect since there is a negative stigmata attached to preparedness by many people, but don’t attempt to hide out like a survival hermit either.
5. You will make mistakes, so don’t get discouraged
Rest assured I’ve been there and had the egg on my face to prove it. I lost flocks of birds, purchased large amounts of foods that expired without being touched, spent far too much money on “useful” items at auctions…it wasn’t perfect by any stretch. But each of those experiences still gave me valuable lessons to learn, and your mistakes will do the same. Be careful so that you avoid a mistake you truly can’t afford, but beyond that be willing to mildly experiment somewhat with things that aren’t going to break your bank or consume all your time.