Experienced Preppers Fall Short As Great Teachers
There seems to always be that cursed word “but”, where the experienced preppers usually fall just a little short of the mark of a great teacher. They never seem to actually talk much, or show much, about the “how” to actually do these necessary/important stuff. Their road map is kept to themselves.
They never seem to realize that we all live in different worlds of experience with different needs and different financial positions. And we have different and often difficult family responsibilities, et cetera.
How I Researched The Specific Article Illustrated Earlier
So let’s go to how I did the research for the specific article I used as the example in Part 1. In part, it’s based on my experience through 40+ years of sales management, raising four terrific kids, and most importantly being a loving husband of 50 years and nine months.
My chosen attitude position is very simple. It was also learned through many pain-filled years of trials with errors uncountable.
I try to follow a line from a movie about WW2. “Be happy in your work.” It’s a great one-liner from a movie from the past, called Bridge on the River Kwai, staring William Holden as an American soldier in Burma, I think. If a task does not have even a small positive benefit for someone, I want out. You should carefully look into both your personal and your family situations so as to put yourself into the best project completion arena possible.
Mass Media and Government Seldom Are Trustworthy
It is my opinion that the mass media and various levels of government will seldom speak frankly, honestly, or candidly about anything that might cause themselves or their agencies to ever look incompetent or unnecessary. More candidly, they lie when it is not necessary to lie. They are most certainly not trustworthy!
Enablement Process for Blog Readers
Enough crud about the bad guys; let’s move on to the “enablement” process. It is also my opinion that too many of us assume (there’s that word again) that anyone who summits an entry hoping for publication must then be some kind of guru prepper and much sharper than the reader, and therefore the high level advice and counsel will be such that the reader will not be capable of doing it.
I can only say to that reader, “STOP, you are better than you think you are. You have proven yourself by reading the blog entries and commentaries, and you are way above the majority of our nation. You are special because you are a “doer” of preparation. Congratulations! Now, let’s get started.”
When Writing, Gather Materials and Select Concept
First, I gathered up paper and pencil and started with a selection of a topic names and a style and concept of what I wanted to accomplish, which is to create an accurate and easy to read and enjoyable assembly of words that the editors would admire and publish and then possibly award a prize. I did four terrific-looking named topic ideas on paper. Then when I started to write, none of the four looked or sounded good enough. I scratched all four. This time, I’ll do the topic naming last.
Personally, I use a pad of lined yellow sheets of paper as my mouse pad on my desk. I buy them by the case yearly. Then I use them as my working paper supply. At this specific point in the creation process, I still have not yet found my title. It will come to me. It always does because I work at it.
I have good lighting and no sound interference, other than the a/c background. I have a comfortable roll around office chair. Why am I saying these mechanical type things to you? This is a preset routine function for myself. Create your personal space and system to best suit your style. This is how I start the doing of something that I feel is important. My plans are important to me. Your plans must be important to you, or you will fail. This is prepper type doctrine!
I genuinely want to help others and to do that I need to be comfortable and at my ease. And so will you. My style is to pester my wife to listen as I write and let me know her thoughts. So far she is nearly always correct. I listen to her.
Find Trusting Soul to Be Honest With You About Your Plan
I suggest strongly that you find a trusting soul who will be honest with you as you create a plan to do something that is important to you. Writing the working plan will always make the chore both easier and more productive.
If you are using your computer’s word processor application, then I would create another page available right next to the one you are using. When I decide to “cut” a part, I then copy it to that other page so I can use that part later if I find that it fits better somewhere else. Never simply delete the part.
For my non-writing activity, I still use lots of paper and cold iced, green tea. It’s sorta fuel for my brain, at least that’s what I tell my wife. She smiles knowingly every time. Most of my preparedness /prepper tasks are not writing. Most efforts are about helping other people, and stuff, money, and my time.
How To Do The Task At Hand
My style of how to do the task at hand is to make multiple lists and use my lists to complete the many parts of most preparedness projects. We have been active preppers since the early 1990’s. Most of our current efforts are to top off some older supplies and help others to get ahead of the game. Here are just a few of our recent lists and types of contents. (Sooner or later, all of these have come up recently in conversations.)
- Who will be or might be involved with me? This is where I note phone numbers and a short “why I picked that person” note to myself. If I do not have a person in mind, I note the name of the activity and leave a line blank for a name later. Then I put a sticky pad note on the Mac face to find someone soonest.
- What is the name of the task requirements and parts? Be very specific as to what will be the finished task utility. Use as much space as is needed. Leave a few lines blank in between the parts for your use later as the work progresses. Keep everything. Throw away absolutely nothing. Nothing!
- Where is the place or places to name that will be used during the work? Again, leave blank lines for input later. Note anything that may be needed to obtain or to lose so as to be necessary for success. Note any items specific to locations that are not the usual thing. If there are materials or equipment needed to be purchased, this is the place to note the particulars. Note phone numbers and names of possible vendors. Note the names of references as to vendors.
- Permits and financing. Be very specific here. Do this stuff as early as possible so as to make the other stuff easier/more accurate. As to the money needed, note who, how much, conditions, when will funding be available, and any possible separate contracts. As to permits, get copies of any needed documents days and weeks prior to actual usage. Know the documents totally! Always, know the paperwork , especially the other guy’s stuff.
- Subs and service people. If the person who wants to do sub work for you does not have a current license and liability insurance paperwork, then be polite when you calmly explain that the financial funding agreement requires written proof of the license and the insurance. And the sub’s lack means “no” on this job but perhaps later. Never burn the bridge you may need later. That goes for everyone connected with the project.
- Wordage. This is a good time and place to mention specific wordage to be used. Everything concerning the task or activity is always to be referred to as being “the project”. It provides an aura of professionalism and credibility to others. And that reflects back to you. Always use “we” and not “I”.
- When. Note start and finished dates requirements. Note “how” and “when” effort measurements are to be made during the work. Especially when you are both the worker and the supervisor, note who will be the inspector. Note any associated costs. Always be there when there is an inspector on the job. Know the inspector’s paperwork in advance, and know it well.
- Money. About the money, if you or your spouse is a veteran, you can negotiate your best pricing for materials at Lowes, and only after the firm pricing is agreed to and you are actually at the checkout lane, pullout your U.S. military veteran status i.d. card, and then and there you will get an extra 10% discount, all year.
- More money stuff. Pay cash for anything that has to be reported to any agency at any level. Save every receipt for everything. Everything else do the visa trip, and be sure to pay it “in full” every month and get the points or cash. Try to live less now so as to have the money needed to live longer later after SHTF.
- Still more money stuff. It is extremely important that you never forget this very special teaching word, T.A.N.S.T.A. A.F.L., which stands for “There Ain’t No Such Thing As A Free Lunch.”
- Food Storage. Be smart and use only proven systems that are available free on the Internet. We have used the Wendy DeWitt system, and we liked it a lot. She teaches that we should not put into storage anything we did not eat in the past 30 days. It sounds so simple and so smart. Here is her website link: http://momwithaprep.com. She is an active LDS person, but I am sure that food storage information has no theology.
And we are at the end of the “how to do it” piece. Learn to love your lists. Use your lists. Save your lists. They are valuable for your next project. Remember that we all have different things about our personal situations, and that the necessary changes are the staff of a successful prepper lifestyle. At least most of the time for most of us. Okay, now for the search for a meaningful title. And the name game winner is: “Do we have your full attention yet?”
And “Be quick to go slow in your planning.”
Your comments are requested and will be appreciated greatly.
SurvivalBlog Writing Contest
This has been another entry for Round 73 of the SurvivalBlog non-fiction writing contest. The nearly $11,000 worth of prizes for this round include:
- A $3000 gift certificate towards a Sol-Ark Solar Generator from Veteran owned Portable Solar LLC. The only EMP Hardened Solar Generator System available to the public.
- A Gunsite Academy Three Day Course Certificate. This can be used for any one, two, or three day course (a $1,095 value),
- A course certificate from onPoint Tactical for the prize winner’s choice of three-day civilian courses, excluding those restricted for military or government teams. Three day onPoint courses normally cost $795,
- DRD Tactical is providing a 5.56 NATO QD Billet upper. These have hammer forged, chrome-lined barrels and a hard case, to go with your own AR lower. It will allow any standard AR-type rifle to have a quick change barrel. This can be assembled in less than one minute without the use of any tools. It also provides a compact carry capability in a hard case or in 3-day pack (an $1,100 value),
- Two cases of Mountain House freeze-dried assorted entrees in #10 cans, courtesy of Ready Made Resources (a $350 value),
- A $250 gift certificate good for any product from Sunflower Ammo,
- Two cases of Meals, Ready to Eat (MREs), courtesy of CampingSurvival.com (a $180 value), and
- American Gunsmithing Institute (AGI) is providing a $300 certificate good towards any of their DVD training courses.
- A Model 175 Series Solar Generator provided by Quantum Harvest LLC (a $439 value),
- A Glock form factor SIRT laser training pistol and a SIRT AR-15/M4 Laser Training Bolt, courtesy of Next Level Training, which have a combined retail value of $589,
- A gift certificate for any two or three-day class from Max Velocity Tactical (a $600 value),
- A transferable certificate for a two-day Ultimate Bug Out Course from Florida Firearms Training (a $400 value),
- A Trekker IV™ Four-Person Emergency Kit from Emergency Essentials (a $250 value),
- A $200 gift certificate good towards any books published by PrepperPress.com,
- A pre-selected assortment of military surplus gear from CJL Enterprize (a $300 value), and
- RepackBox is providing a $300 gift certificate to their site.
- A Royal Berkey water filter, courtesy of Directive 21 (a $275 value),
- A large handmade clothes drying rack, a washboard, and a Homesteading for Beginners DVD, all courtesy of The Homestead Store, with a combined value of $206,
- Expanded sets of both washable feminine pads and liners, donated by Naturally Cozy (a $185 retail value),
- Two Super Survival Pack seed collections, a $150 value, courtesy of Seed for Security, LLC,
- Mayflower Trading is donating a $200 gift certificate for homesteading appliances, and
- Two 1,000-foot spools of full mil-spec U.S.-made 750 paracord (in-stock colors only) from www.TOUGHGRID.com (a $240 value).
Round 73 ends on November 30th, so get busy writing and e-mail us your entry. Remember that there is a 1,500-word minimum, and that articles on practical “how to” skills for survival have an advantage in the judging.