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Originally published January 12 2015

8 common prepper mistakes to avoid

by L.J. Devon, Staff Writer

(NaturalNews) Whether it's an earthquake, hurricane, tornado, pandemic, riot, grid failure, terrorist attack or nuclear meltdown, making preparations beforehand can make all the difference, not just for survival purposes, but also for thriving and reestablishing community and order after collapse. It's highly probable that, during any kind of breakdown, all morals are thrown out the window. Unprepared neighbors become desperate and violent in a hurry if they have no food to feed their families and the store shelves are empty.

Preparing as selfish individuals might be the first prepper mistake to avoid.

Knowing how to prepare as civil communities is initially the most important step. By thinking as a tribe, entire groups of people have a better chance at survival during catastrophe because everyone learns to work together, utilizing strengths and compensating for weaknesses among all members in the group.

The second common prepper mistake to avoid involves relying primarily on stored surplus. Hoarding large caches of ammunition and food are no good if one doesn't have any realistic skills, which might include basic communication skills, mechanical skills or even hunting skills. When the food store is overrun or if the ammo cache is hijacked, do you know how to hunt using a slingshot, spears or wild-crafted bow and arrows? In a true survival situation, ideal caches of stored goods might not be held intact as planned.

That's why, when preparing for anything, it's important to basically evaluate how you live. Separate needs from wants, necessities from luxuries. What makes your world tick day to day? Identify what's important.

How much clean water does your family drink each day? Do you have a backup source, a sufficient stored supply or method of natural collection, if the tap water were to stop magically flowing? How much is needed weekly for bathing and cleaning? Stocking up on paper plates is a way to lessen dependence on dish washing which could waste precious water if it becomes scarce.

How much food is necessary so that your family meets daily nutritional and caloric needs? Having a backup supply on hand could ensure your family's energy during a difficult time. There are pre-sealed meal packages on the market that many preppers stockpile. There's other cheaper ways to pack food in bulk. You can seal food in large food-grade storage bags and then seal it in 5-gallon buckets. For example, quinoa, rice or oats can be purchased in bulk and sealed in buckets you purchase. Make sure to date food and rotate it into your pantry to avoid spoilage, which is a common prepper mistake. Stocking up on food only to watch it spoil is a wasteful practice that can be avoided by working the food into your family's meal plan before it expires.

Are you prepared to take care of your family if they become ill or injured during a crisis situation? Extra bandages and cans of all-purpose herbal salve can cover a lot of ground in an emergency situation where wounds and swelling are concerned. Also, knowing how to identify, dry, store and use specific herbs can be a life-saving skill in any kind of emergency home medical situation today. Preserving herbal extracts in alcohol can provide crucial medicine in times of disease, sleep deprivation or anxiety. Herbs can be used to boost the immune system, enhance quality of sleep, reduce stress, improve nutrition levels, detoxify the body and stabilize the gut. What kind of plant medicine do you have on hand and do you know how to use it effectively?

Banking on the use of violence for self-defense is not the only way to defend your and your family. Knowing how to cooperate, barter and communicate with others is equally important. Self-defense involves much more than just storing caches of weapons and ammo. Preppers can quickly go gun-crazy, collecting multiple weapons that may have no practical use during a bug-out or survival situation. Weapons could even become a liability and may be used against a prepper in a desperate situation. Do you know how to use a weapon in an adrenaline intense-situation? Knowing how to control breathing during an adrenaline rush might be more important. Understanding the general demographics and the layout of the land in your area could be crucial too.

Perhaps the worst mistake a prepared person can make is becoming obsessive about the future, becoming compulsive about preparation. Many times, it's best to live in the now, not stressing about what you'll eat three years from now. Everyone can make practical steps to prepare themselves for whatever lies ahead, but worrying about every last detail can remove one from their current state of existence. Preppers can work themselves to death for years hoarding up the necessary supplies for a future catastrophe, only to miss out on more important life opportunities that could have been enjoyed in the now. It's important to remember that every action we take as conscious beings is projected into the universe, causing an equal reaction.

Are we manifesting catastrophe by the way we prepare or are we manifesting a world better today than it was yesterday by the way we love and work together with one another?


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