In movies and TV shows we often see preppers made out to be anti-social lunatics or even murderers. The truth is far less dramatic, as preppers are regular people who desire independence from modern conveniences and have the advantage of foresight. Many are family-oriented people who have much to lose and want to have the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’re ready for any and all possible crises.
Due to the pandemic, 2020 was the year we all realized how vulnerable to societal distress we really were. Those who were prepared to live in isolation, relying on their own land and resources for survival, were the least affected by hour-long wait times to get groceries and the empty shelves of essential items. The more reliant we are on the grid and on services provided for us by the government, the easier we are to control by said government.
The more prepared we are to sustain ourselves, however, the less we are at the whim of careless and indifferent government officials who are always seeking to find inexpensive solutions for the greatest number of people, often at the peril of individuals and outliers.
When you begin to consider all of the ways you’re not prepared in the event of a crisis, the weight of your dependency on the state can be very overwhelming — but don’t panic, prepare! Below I outline five ways anyone can prep for a potential crisis situation that require little effort and investment.
1. Have a Stocked Pantry
Sometimes when we think about stocking up on food for an emergency situation images of army ration packs and disgusting dehydrated mush enter our minds. Many companies specialize in selling these types of emergency food products, and I would advise you to stay away from them entirely. While their offers of a month supply of food with a 30-year shelf life may seem appealing, nothing could be less appealing than the food itself.
When you’re in a crisis situation, food may be one of the only pleasures life offers. In dire circumstances, the boost you get from enjoying a delicious meal can’t be understated. The last thing you want to do is set yourself up to have to eat bland pasta and chicken-flavored rice dishes over and over.
When you build a food stockpile, it makes much more sense to buy quality ingredients that you already use in your home cooking that have a decent shelf-life. This way you are continually using up what’s in your pantry and then restocking it as you use it, thus ensuring your stockpile is “fresh.” By stocking up this way you can ensure you have a six-month supply of food that’s actually palatable and a source of comfort during a crisis, rather than one more awful part of survival.
When you’re in a crisis situation, food may be one of the only pleasures life offers.
Some of the items that I love to have in my pantry and use often in my regular cooking are things like lentils, rice, pasta, cans of tuna or chicken in olive oil, tins of organic bean medley, chocolate/vanilla protein powder, flour, sugar, yeast, cacao powder, jars of organic tomato sauce, coconut milk, pancake mix, oats and muesli, jams, nut butters, chicken stock, dehydrated mushrooms, almond milk, instant coffee and tea, walnuts and almonds, pickled beets, sauerkraut, raw honey, horseradish, hot sauce, soya sauce, apple cider vinegar, and various spices like garlic powder, salt, pepper, onion powder, and Indian spice mixes. These are things I use all the time in my cooking, and they can be combined in a variety of ways to make lots of tasty and nutritious dishes.
It took me about eight months to acquire a pantry stocked with six months worth of food. I didn’t go to the grocery store and clear out a shelf of tuna so that there was none left for anyone else. I simply added a couple of things here and there on my regular grocery runs so that over time I built up my stash of ingredients without having a negative effect on others in my community.
It’s important to acknowledge here that when we prepare we are doing it as an act of self-preservation which makes us less of a burden to others. When people are not prepared and a crisis occurs, we often see people panicking and selfishly clearing out shelves of essential items so no one else can have any. This is avoided when we look out for ourselves in a responsible fashion.
Mercy items are things you stock up on so that you have enough to share with those who are in need.
Finally, I would like to mention mercy items. Mercy items are things you stock up on so that in the event of a crisis you have enough to share with those who are in need. I always keep extras of things like oats, beans, and rice so that I can share these essentials if need be. I also include things like a rudimentary first aid kit and over-the-counter medicines which reduce symptoms of illness in my pantry stockpile. If going to the hospital seems riskier than not, as it did in 2020, I always prefer to treat sickness at home.
2. Purchase Heirloom Seeds
The second step to food independence is starting a garden, and maybe even getting a few chickens, but let’s take this one simple step at a time. Before we can even begin to envision what growing our own food would be like, it’s important to have a stock of seeds on hand which have a high germination rate and are organic so that they can be replanted over and over.
For now, I have a little heirloom seed vault that lives in the back of my refrigerator because I’m not in a position or climate where growing my own food is feasible, but I have the seeds for when that time comes. During the pandemic, there were complete sellouts of heirlooms seeds from online retailers. This isn’t an item you want to procrastinate on purchasing. The seeds keep indefinitely if stored properly, and while you’re sustained by your pantry lasting you roughly six months, you can grow a season’s worth of food.
Seeds keep indefinitely if stored properly.
When you begin growing your own food, it’s important to know how to preserve that food so that it will last you as long as possible. Acquiring books on canning, jarring, dehydration, and freezing are also recommended so that you get the absolute most out of your summer and fall harvest.
3. Get a Water Filtration System
Purchasing a water filtration system was literally life-changing for me. The only thing I drink or cook with these days is tap water, which I then filter myself. Old pipes depositing heavy metals and fluoride-tainted municipal water is not something I’m interested in drinking or offering to my family.
I opted for the Alexapure water filtration system, which is a more cost-effective version of the Berky. These filters remove 99.9% of all fine particles and chemicals from your water to leave you with water better than anything you’ve ever tasted.
I can’t stand drinking unfiltered or bottled water now, I’ll never go back. In the event of a severe weather emergency, like we saw recently in Texas, and I lose access to my tap water, then I can easily walk a mile down to the river and filter it myself. Water is not something you want to be without, and stocking up on hundreds of plastic bottles of water is so much more expensive than just investing in a solid water purifier.
Stocking up on water bottles is much more expensive than just investing in a solid water purifier.
If a situation never arises where I need to collect rain or river water and filter it myself, I will be very thankful. Meanwhile, I enjoy the luxury of pure and safe water I can trust on a daily basis.
4. Invest Your Money Wisely
The looming threat of economic crisis truly feels inevitable at this point. Fiat money hasn’t been backed by anything other than the people’s ever-diminishing trust since 1970 when Nixon completely abandoned the gold standard. Our governments and central banks continue to print money as if it will result in consequence-free, infinite prosperity when anyone with any knowledge of history or how the economy works knows this is impossible.
Due to the sheer size of the U.S debt bubble and the complexity of the global economic system, we can expect the coming economic downturn to be on a scale like nothing we’ve ever seen before in history. It’s prudent to consider how this may affect you and your family.
The safest place to invest your money is in silver and gold, which may very well skyrocket in value in the event of an economic crisis. By purchasing small quantities of silver and gold coins you not only retain the value of your money, but silver and gold coins can be used to buy food, gasoline, and other necessities when the value of fiat currency becomes worthless.
The safest place to invest your money is in silver and gold.
The other area where investment could be of great use to you is cryptocurrency. If you are to invest in cryptocurrency with little to no understanding of how it works, I would advise only investing what you’re willing and able to lose. I would also say buying and holding Bitcoin is a much safer means of using crypto to your advantage than swing trading alt-coins for example.
Due to the volatility and unpredictable nature of crypto markets, scalping profits is not an endeavor for the faint of heart, but if you buy and hold Bitcoin there does seem to be a good chance that you could grow your investment while keeping your savings safe if the U.S. dollar collapses.
5. Build a Community
One of the greatest advantages you can have in a crisis situation, that will cost you nothing to invest in, is a community. Having a solid network of people you trust that you can call for help, support, or guidance in a crisis situation is likely the single greatest asset you can have. The unpredictability of crisis situations means that even people who are prepared can find themselves needing help from others to survive. Having a community you can rely on and trust during a crisis could mean the difference between merely surviving and thriving.
Having a network of people you can call for help is likely the single greatest asset you can have.
Knowing skilled individuals who have resources that can be traded or shared is also extremely helpful. Surviving a crisis situation requires finding ways to meet our human needs on our own. Sometimes this means more than just acquiring food and water. It can mean companionship, entertainment, and connections with others too. Having a solid community of like minds who you can lean on during hard times does wonders for morale and can keep your spirits high even in the most dismal of times.
Time and time again, we see crisis situations unfold in the news and we always think it won’t happen to us — until it does. To be truly free one must be self-sufficient and self-sustaining. By enacting these five simple things into your life, you will find yourself far more prepared than a vast majority of the population. We prepare in the hopes of never having to experience a crisis, but as Howard Ruff once wisely said, “It wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark,” and you too shouldn’t wait for the storm to be at your doorstep before having a strategy for how to survive it.