So what is a basic definition of prepping?
A basic definition of prepping is ‘Gaining the skills, supplies, and mental and physical fortitude to be prepared for any circumstance.’ While it is likely impossible to be prepared for ‘any’ circumstance, such as the moon careening out of orbit or a large asteroid strike a la Armageddon, that is the goal we shoot for.
When I discuss being prepared, I don’t just mean in terms of a major disaster, but also each little emergency in our lives. For example, can you change a flat or jumpstart your car? Do you know how to safely deal with a wasp’s nest underneath your porch? How to safely put out a stove fire?
So while yes, we’ll talk about being able to deal with a power outage lasting 30 days on our own store of supplies, being a prepper means being self-sufficient wherever we can. I’ll be straight up with y’all. For most of my life, I was a chain-smoking, video-game playing, indoor-dwelling, TV-watching sloth. My opinion of a trip outside was running to the convenience store for more Amberbock. My method of changing a tire or jump-starting my car was calling AAA.
However, somewhere along the line about 7 years ago, I started controlling the elements of my life, instead of having them control me. I quit smoking cold turkey, and I was smoking 3 packs a day. I got out of debt, even though I was only making a very average wage. I started to get back into shape after having abused my body with smokes and alcohol for many years.
So please believe me when I say anyone can do this, and needs to! My family were laughing at me recently as I struggled to dig a trench for my wife’s tomato plants. I was actually a little hurt, but to be honest they were right to laugh. They have never known me as anything other than a couch-dwelling, coffee-swilling layabout.
So digging ditches was not something I had ever done before…but guess what? It is now. I’ve learned quite a bit about good technique and not so good technique. And as a side benefit, because so much of what I dug up was rock, I decided to kill two birds and use the rock to help with a grade I am going to build up under my porch.
If something needs to be done around my house, it is my responsibility to do it, especially if it doesn’t require specialized skills (and sometimes even if it does). The reason I started Advice and Beans is because I believe it is time for every person to make self-sufficiency part of our lives, and to not expect others to do for us what we can do for ourselves.
If we make it a habit to try to resolve any situation prior to calling in the cavalry, eventually we’ll find that most of us can do many tasks we used to rely on others for. That ability to function consistently without outside assistance will help in the most critical times, because we will have conditioned ourselves to act, not react.
So What’s Next?
Our next 3 posts will cover the individual components of prepping: skills, supplies and fortitude.