Dear Preppers: You’re Doing It Wrong
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If you’re investing in expensive gear and elaborate survival plans, but not investing your health and physical fitness—you’re doing it wrong.
The whole point of prepping is to maximize your chances of survival. What better way to do that than by being physical fit, healthy, and resilient? How do expect to run when you need to run? Climb when you need to climb? Swim when you need to swim? Now try doing that for 16 hours with a 40lb bag of survival gear strapped to your back.
How do you expect to survive the worst when you can’t even climb a flight of stairs?
And what happens when you get sick? Or injured? If you’re not healthy, your body will struggle to recover. No amount of gear or clever strategy can save you from yourself. Do not wait until it’s too late.
Survival is not a hobby. Survival is not a game. If you take your role as a prepper seriously, then you’ll take your health seriously.
Stop eating those chips, get off the couch, and start prepping like you mean it. Get your mind right, get your diet right, and start working out like your life depends on it. Focus on strength and flexibility. Don’t worry about fat loss. You’re going to need that energy source when you’re running from zombies.
If you’re spending hours studying survival combat techniques, but not cultivating strong bonds with the people close to you—you’re doing it wrong.
No man is an island. You cannot survive alone. There is strength in numbers and you need people to love you. You need the people who love you to be loyal to you, and they need your love and loyalty in return.
Who do you live for? Who are you willing to fight for? Die for? Is anyone willing to die for you?
Can you imagine the people you love the most turning against you in a moment of fear and desperation? I can’t imagine anything sadder. The world as you know it has ended, and your kids and spouse have abandoned you. Now, you’re alone—all alone.
You could have prevented it you know. If only you had loved a little stronger. If only you had taken the time to bring a little joy to their lives. But now it’s too late. They don’t love you. They don’t need you.
Fortunately for you, this scenario doesn’t have to come true. You can cultivate strong bonds with your loved ones. You can bring joy to their lives and they to yours.
Spend time with your family. Quality time. Learn their likes and dislikes, their strengths and weaknesses, their Love Language, but more than any of those things—learn how to make them smile. Then, make them smile as frequently as you possibly can.
You can find advice for building a happy a family all over the internet and library, but my favorite source comes from my favorite blog, The Art of Manliness. They have a category dedicated to relationships and family and it’s a wonderful resource.
If you’re stockpiling cigarettes and booze for bartering, but not investing in personal development—you’re doing it wrong.
How do you expect to handle the mental and emotional challenges of survival when you’ve got the social skills of a monkey and the resiliency of a toothpick?
In my post, Personal Development: Why Bother? I talk about the many ways personal development can benefit you.
The post itself has nothing directly to do with prepping, but in it, I make some important points. A very quick summary of that very long post is this: the better developed you are, the more resilient you will be.
The more resilient you are, they better your chances for survival, both in times of peace and in times of turmoil. Personal development can boost your resiliency in a myriad of different ways.
Stop! Go back and reread what I just wrote. I know you’re just scrolling on by. I know you’re not taking these words to heart. If you really want to survive, you need to become the best possible person you can be. Do not dismiss the importance of personal development!
When disaster strikes, there will be no room for lazy people. There will no room for cowards. If you can’t handle life as it is now, how are you ever going to brave it as it will be then?
Step outside of your comfort zone—embrace the challenges of personal development.
If you’re hoarding prescription pain killers, but you’re not flossing your teeth—you’re doing it wrong.
Most cavities and gum infections start between the teeth. Once a cavity started, there’s no stopping it. It will eventually destroy your entire tooth, root and all. These are cavities that could have otherwise been prevented if only the person had regularly and properly flossed their teeth.
How do you plan on eating with rotten teeth? Have you ever had a serious toothache? I have, and I’ll tell you, the pain is literally blinding and near-paralyzing; eating is not an option, and drinking only barely.
Exactly how do you plan on handling a dental emergency after society has crumbled? Are you going to extract your own tooth? Or perhaps you plan on asking some poor, reluctant sod to do it for you?
And here’s a question for you—How are you going to attract a mate with a jacked up grill and breath that smells like ass? Have you even thought about that? Or do you plan on being one of those broody lone-wolf types? I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to live without a mate—especially when the world as I know it has ended.
I have an idea! How about, instead of waiting until you have a problem to seek a solution, you prevent the problem in the first place? It’s genius I tell ya!
The dental floss I use is Oral-B Glide Pro-Health Deep Clean. It’s not cheap, but it’s the best there is. Other silky flosses are either too silky or too waxy. Glide Deep Clean is perfect, it slides gently and removes plaque effectively. I utilize Amazon’s Subscribe and Save to have 6 packs automatically mailed to me every 6 months.
You’re an adult. Pull on your adult knickers, lace up your adult boots, top it off with your grown-adult top hat, and floss your friggin’ teeth.
If you’ve got a bug out bag, but don’t have a bug out vest—you’re doing it wrong.
A bug out bag is going to be a heavy burden that will slow you down and make you a target for thieves. That’s not to say you shouldn’t have one, but a bug out vest should be your priority. A vest will weigh less and will make you less conspicuous.
Now, you could go with a conventional piece of gear like a tactical vest, but again, it will make you stand out as a target for thieves. I suggest trying to avoid looking obvious altogether and going with something more covert, like a SCOTTeVEST instead. The SCOTTeVESTs are loaded with pockets, but they’re sleek and plain. They look like they could be a regular part of your wardrobe.
My husband, myself, and my brother-in-law all own SCOTTeVESTs and we love them.
Combining a bug out bag with a bug out vest will give you the most versatility. You’ll have the gear you need, but you’ll still be able to run if you need to.
Which brings me to one final product recommendation. A Pacsafe bag protector. If you need to temporarily stash your bag, you can use the bag protector to help deter potential thieves. It may or may not be worth the investment, but it is worth considering.
If you’re stockpiling things like toilet paper and paper towels—you’re doing it wrong.
Where are your priorities? When the very fabric of society is being torn to shreds, toilet paper is going to be last thing worth worrying about.
Not only do toilet paper and paper towels take up an enormous amount of space—space that could be better utilized for food and water storage, but YOU DON’T NEED THEM.
The whole point of preparing for disaster is to maximize your chances of survival. You do not need toilet paper to survive.
I get it. You will need to wipe your ass, but it makes no sense to stockpile toilet paper.
First of all, there is plenty of toilet paper to go around. If you really wanted it, toilet paper could be found in warehouses, trucks, grocery stores, and homes throughout most of the world. Locating abandoned toilet paper won’t be nearly as challenging as locating abandoned food or water.
Second of all, what’s wrong with a rag? Why can’t you wipe your ass with a rag? Rags take up much less space, last longer, and are much more versatile than toilet paper. Here’s what you do:
First, select a rag, those soft microfiber face cloths are perfect for butthole wiping. They’re even brown, so they’ll hide stains better.
Next, declare that rag as your rag. That’s your butt-wipe—nobody else’s. You are responsible for your own butt-wiping rag. You keep it, you clean it.
Finally, after you use it, wash it thoroughly, then hang it somewhere where the sun can dry it and kill any bacteria.
Additionally, guess what? You don’t need a rag either. Your hand can function as a butt-wiper in a pinch. Use your hand, then wash up when you’re done. I know, I know, gross right? Well, suck it up buttercup! Whining is for the weak. Survival is for the strong.
Still, I’m not completely heartless, I have a solution—sorta. It’s called a portable bidet. It’s a small bottle with a spout that lets you squeeze water onto your bits to clean yourself off. You certainly don’t need it, but it’s an option you might prefer, especially if you’re female.
There, problem solved. You can wipe your butt without toilet paper.
*Important Note! I saw another blogger recommending sponges for wiping. Don’t do this! Sponges harbor bacteria in the worst way! The last thing you need is an infection!
I want to end this post by saying that while prepping is worthwhile and fun, it should never be at the expense of what is important today. Today is, tomorrow will be, but disaster may or may not be.
If you don’t have your shit together for today, then please, put a pause on the prepping. Focus on being the best you can be today. Cultivate virtues and become the best human, parent, child, neighbor, and citizen you can. Get healthy, get an education, get out of debt, save for retirement, and give back to the world. Do all of the noble, honorable, and virtuous things first—then plan for what might be.