As preppers we are always looking for ways to improve our situation, and think about what live would be like after a SHTF event. Even if we have our food storage covered, our water storage covered and have plenty of guns and ammo, all it takes is one kink in the hose to mess up our preparedness plan.
The truth is, foods storage and water storage are the easy parts of prepping. While these might be the most important, there are a number of smaller situations that we don’t give a second thought to that could cause big problems when it comes to life after SHTF if we don’t know how to handle them.
In the show this week Lisa and I went over some overlooked areas of preparedness, and how even the smallest thing could become a game changer.
SPP161 Life After SHTF & Some Overlooked Problems
No Public Servants
This might not be “overlooked” but it is something that deserves more consideration than it gets. Without police, the fire department and EMT’s we will be completely on our own when it comes to solving major problems.
We take for granted how easily we can get support when we need it these days, but what would you do if there were no police to intervene? Or what if you had to put out a house fire with a garden hose? We need to think about some of these scenarios, and think about what we would do.
Not Being Honest With Yourself
We all like to give ourselves a little more credit than we deserve…I know I do. But if we are not honest about how prepared we are, or how skilled we are, we are setting ourselves up to fail. When all the cards are on table, the only one it’s going to matter to is us. It’s either us surviving, or us not surviving.
Being honest with yourself means leaving your ego at the front door, knowing there is always someone better than us, and knowing there is always more we can learn.
Trash & Sanitation
Without our trash being taken away on a weekly basis, sanitation is bound to become an issue. Not only will the trash be building up, but cleaning the house will not be as easy as turning on the faucet, plugging in the vacuum, or even something as simple as flushing the toilet.
Keeping ourselves clean, and our cloths clean will also be harder than it is today. Taking a hot shower will be a thing of the past unless you have a solar shower, and washing clothes means using an old school washboard, or using something like the Wonder Wash.
Everything is Going to Run Out
Like it or not all of our preparedness supplies are going to run out at one point or another. Spoilage, overusage and theft could all reduce our preparedness timeline. Even if nothing like this happens, eventually our food, our ammo, our supplies, and medication are going to run out.
We need to think about all the supplies and food we have stored as a buffer to get us through until we can figure out a long term solution.
Not Having Tools or Supplies
Most of us have a hammer and a couple of screwdrivers, but do you have something as simple as nails and screws? If we need to do repairs on the home, or build something, there will be no hardware store to go to, what we have will be our hardware store.
Having manual tools like saws, hammers and drills are important, but not having the little things can make life pretty difficult. Making sure we have tapes and adhesives, enough screws and nails, automotive fluids, wrenches and sockets and maybe even some scrap wool laying around is a good idea.
Not Having the Skills You Need
We all like to believe that we could do what it takes when push comes to shove (I do anyway) but in reality, the situation will play our far different in real life than it does in our heads.
The more skills we have, the less supplies we need to survive. Not only are these skills free (for the most part) they give us the ability to get through tough situations by using our heads, giving us an advantage over everyone who is reliant on the “stuff” they have.
While life after SHTF is going to require more manual labor and work, there is bound to be down time…especially after the sun goes down. In today’s society we have a million distractions, but in a SHTF event that all goes away.
Having books, board games, musical instruments and even getting outside and doing some hard work are good ways of curing boredom. This is especially important for anyone with children, because a bored child can make your life miserable.
In a post SHTF situation cellphones might become non existent, or an unaffordable luxury, but we will still need a way to communicate when the family is separated. Shortwave radios, walkie talkies and ham radios might be our only option.
Also included in communication is talking to your family and educating them about safety and planning. Make sure everyone knows what to do in different situations, and make use of the down time by making sure everyone is on the same page.
With all the “stuff” we need to buy when it come to being prepared, buying extra prepping supplies purely for bartering purposes tends to get put on the back burner. The truth is, these supplies could turn out to be incredibly useful.
Most people are not as prepared as we are, and when these people need lighters, batteries or even alcohol, we might be able to trade for something we need…like nails or wood that we don’t have haha.
Small things Become Big Things
We talked about a couple of articles in the podcast from Urban Survival Site that tie into life after SHTF & some overlooked problems pretty well. the first one was “10 SHTF Problems You Might Not Have Planned For” and the other was “20 Worst Things About Life After The SHTF”
Just because you have been preparing, doesn’t mean everyone else has been. You need to think about what happens when someone comes to your door, and they will. How are you going to manage that type of situation? Have you shared your prepping with would be friends, or family? If you have, be prepared that if things get really bad, they are going to think of coming to your house as their salvation.
Every Day Conveniences
This will probably be the masses, rather than those who focus on preparedness. But there are modern conveniences that may not be available, like running water in your house, or electronic banking, or even your job. If all of these things were gone tomorrow, would you be ready? Do you have a backup plan?
In a total grid down event, the credit card companies may not come knocking on your door, but eventually they probably will. How will you pay your bills? It is enticing to think about the world going to crap, and no more bills. But remember people are greedy, they will figure out a way to get what they feel is owed to them, this includes your mortgage company. Make sure you have a way to pay your bills.
Also, when the food closet is bare, you will not be able to run to the store to buy dinner, you will need to have enough food to get through whatever situation you may have to face. So plan for the worst.
False Sense of Security
Once you begin to amass large quantities of food, it is easy to get complacent about your food storage. When you purchase a new gun, it is easy to think that you are more prepared. If you prep for a year or longer, it is easy to think you are better off than your neighbors.
It is this way of thinking that can sabotage your plan in the long run. This is why it is important to not only continually add to our supplies, but also our skills. We have an excellent opportunity right now to add to our skill set because we have practically everything at our finger tips. Don’t get lazy, use your time wisely and plan. You are your own insurance policy for an SHTF situation.
Not Having a Backup Plan
The most important thing in my opinion that preppers need to do is have a backup plan. Always plan for the worst, and figure out how you are going to in that situation. I have fun with this, and work through what if scenarios. What if I lost everything? What if the FEMA people came knocking on my door? What if I ran out of toilet paper?
These are all possibilities, so think through and plan what you would do, and come up with what if’s for every area of your preparedness.