Until I seriously became a prepper, the most likely disasters in my life involved my nail tech quitting or my husband insisting on a homemade dinner! How times have changed. Now when I think of disasters, I’m thinking more along the lines of The End of Days scenarios with an unsettling feeling they could happen now, in my lifetime.
For which disaster, or disasters, should I prepare? These days of hard, uncertain times, it’s a little like playing the odds. Hmmmmm, should I prepare for a nuclear attack? If so, I’ll need an enormous amount of sheet plastic, duct tape, and I read somewhere that you’re better protected from fall-out if you have a few feet of earth piled up against your outside walls. Our HOA would just love that!
But, really, is my very first concern a nuclear attack? No. The odds are much better for a dramatic increase in crime and riots in certain parts of our city or peaceful protests that suddenly become very violent. Even better odds favor a continued deep decline in our incomes, higher taxes, and possibly losing our home to foreclosure. It just makes sense to first define the most likely disasters and then prepare for each as best you can. A comprehensive survival guide like this one makes this easy.
Define your disaster with this first step
Since the catastrophic event most likely to affect us is loss of income, that’s where my focus has been. Some time ago, I turned our spare room into a pantry, and my goal has been to store at least six months’ worth of food. This translates into a 6-month margin where I wouldn’t have to spend money on groceries. I’ve also fought hard to save every penny I can.
If we lived in an area prone to earthquakes, that would be near the top of my priorities. Urban dwellers may put personal and home protection at the top of their lists.
If you’ve been into the survival mode for a while, life changes over time, and so will your concerns and priorities. It’s worth taking a second look now to see if your prepping needs adjusting.
Here are a few possible disasters to consider. Which ones are most likely to affect you?
Natural disasters — Mother Nature at her worst: wildfires, floods, earthquakes, drought, hurricanes, and more
Personal disasters — loss of job, decreased work hours, illness or injury affecting your ability to work, your mother-in-law moving in
Nuclear events — including, but not limited to, an electromagnetic pulse and actual mushroom clouds
Terrorist attacks — use your imagination. Terrorists certainly do!
Social unrest — riots, car-jackings, increased violent crimes of all types, prison escapes
War of any kind
Biological catastrophe — spread of diseases, either purposely or the natural spread of something contagious like Ebola
After thinking it over and talking with my husband, here is the list I wrote for our family.
1. Loss of income
2. Loss of home
3. An event of any kind that occurs while my family members are scattered at different locations around the city
4. Violent crime against my children, my husband, or myself
6. Massive failure of the power grid
With some planning and prepping, you realize you have more control over how these events will affect your family than you might think. The key is to identify likely calamities and then take action. Fortunately, prepping for one event gives you a head start prepping for additional events, thus saving money and time.
Simply taking this step puts you light years ahead of millions of people, and I believe it will give you and your family some peace of mind no matter what happens.
What is Number One on your list?
Take this 5-Question Threat Assessment Quiz
Click here to download and print this assessment. This will walk you through the steps of identifying which disasters are top priority for you and then narrow them down to which one you should prepare for first.
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