Every year at this time, I see people start out the year with good intentions. They make New Year’s resolutions to lose weight, get in shape, watch less TV or to start prepping. For the first few days they do well, and then something gets in the road. You can see a good example of this at the gym, in January it is packed and then as spring approaches you can see the people dropping out.
So you have made a New Year’s resolution to start prepping, what do you do next?. First, make a real commitment in your mind. Decide that you are not going to be one of the failures. Don’t start to try to do everything overnight and burn yourself out.
10 Steps to start prepping
- Evaluate what you already have. How much extra food do you have in the house? What kind of camping gear do you have? Do you own firearms? How much can you budget to purchase preps? Don’t go into debt to start prepping.
- Study and make a plan. Find a good book or two. I recommend mine “Emergency Preparedness and More”, but there are other good choices. Look at the selected reading list in this blog. How many people will you be feeding? What skills do they have?
- Where does your water come from? Is there water readily available in your neighborhood when the grid is down? Do you have a means of purifying water? Look up Sodis in this blog. If you don’t have a good reliable water source, you need to start storing water. The water from your tap is probably safe to store. Get some empty 2-liter soda bottles and start filling them. Store them in a dark place if possible. Under your house is great if you have a raised floor. Figure at least a gallon a day per person.
- Food, start adding to your food supply every time you go to the grocery store. Start out with foods you normally eat. Evaluate how much food you want to store and make a plan. Learn about how and what to store for long term storage. I think you need at least a one year supply.
- Look over your camping gear or figure out what you could improvise, if you were forced to leave your house today. Put together a bug out bag, there are lots of good lists available. Upgrade your kit as you can afford it. Garage sales are a great source of inexpensive equipment.
- First aid, what kind of a first aid kit do you have? If you don’t already have it, get some first aid or medical training. Download a free copy of “Where There Is No Doctor”
- Do you have a garden, if not can you grow one? Get heritage seeds and start to grow a garden. Study gardening. Learn about what is growing in your area. This could include wild edible plants and weeds. Can you preserve what you grow? Learn to can and dry food.
- How are you going to cook your foods and light your home with the grid down? Read the following link for information on cooking. Research various light systems such as solar and kerosene lanterns. Keep a good flashlight and plenty of batteries on hand.
- Evaluate your security, do you have good locks on your home? Protect your home from fire. If you can legally possess firearms or other means of self-defense, you should seriously consider obtaining them. Spend some time learning to use them correctly and safely. Take classes, do what is necessary to learn how to use them.
- Make an alternate plan in case you have to leave your home. Get a bug out location if possible. But keep it within a reasonable distance.
Some of you may differ with the above list and the order in which I have placed the steps to start prepping. But regardless of the order in which you do them they are all necessary. Now is the right time to start prepping. Today not Tomorrow.