If you don’t know what sudden changes are coming, how can you be prepared for future emergencies? Everyone has certain basic needs: food, shelter, clothing, money, family and friends, social community, spiritual or faith based beliefs.
The myth is that it takes a long time and a lot of money to be prepared. I am not talking about preppers and a year’s supply of expensive freeze dried foods, generators, guns, bunkers, etc. There is a simpler, more practical, affordable way to become prepared. Small, consistent steps will get you there. This requires discipline and persistence! Set a goal and don’t stop until you reach it! Then go to the next goal. Keep your focus on the big picture: debt free, healthy, prepared, living a simple and sustainable lifestyle.
My Practical Tips for Preparedness
Money: Focus on rearranging your spending priorities to free up more money for necessities. Tighten your belt on consumer spending and instant gratification purchases. The money you just spent on that new _________ could have paid off debt. Look at your monthly bill obligations. Cut back on credit card spending to get out of credit card debt. Those interest rates are the highest.
Transportation: The next highest interest you are paying is usually your car loan. Pay that down with the money you spent on instant gratification things, impulse buying, online spending, etc. To save money you can carpool, share rides, take the bus or buy a used bicycle at a resale store.
Shelter: If you own a home don’t treat the equity like a piggybank by refinancing for trips, new car, etc. When the car loan is paid off, put that same monthly payment toward your mortgage payment to pay down your home loan faster. (Check with your bank for directions and follow them carefully.) If you are a renter think about ways to reduce your rent. Add a roommate. (They must be added to the rental contract.) Move to a lower cost rental. Stay with relatives while you get back on your feet.
Business: Get a side gig to bring in more money. Work from home and online to cut expenses of paying rent for an office or store front. Check out business opportunities carefully. Avoid scams.
Clothing: Buy any necessary clothing from resale stores. Clear your closet of clothes you don’t wear and donate them to resale stores. Buy warm clothing for when power goes off and there is no heat. Also lower thermostat in winter to save electricity by wearing warm clothing.
Food: Good nutrition is required in your Preparedness Pantry, and in your everyday meals. Each time you go to the store buy at least 1 extra non-perishable item for your Preparedness Pantry. Store it in a special area of your cupboards. Rotate stock by eating the oldest and replacing with the newest items. Buy nutrition essentials only. No junk food, desserts, etc. This is your survival food!
Protein – canned fish, chicken, beef, seafood, beans. Bagged nuts, seeds, protein powder (smoothies)
Vegetables and Fruit – dried fruit, canned fruit, vegetables, pasta sauces and soup, dehydrated soups
Carbohydrates – pasta, instant mashed potatoes, quick rice, instant rolled oats, dry cereals
Beverages – shelf safe milk cartons, water in BPA free plastic bottles, tomato juice, pure fruit juices
Staples – biscuit and pancake mixes, syrup, cooking oil, sugar, salt, seasonings, flour, baking soda, baking powder. 2 gal. portable thermos. 2, 3, 4 burner portable stove, griddle and propane cannisters