Are You Wasting Your Time With Your Preps?

You’re not alone. I mean, just imagine…

You spend thousands of dollars building your survival food and gear stockpiles. You take months, even years to build up your knowledge of survival skills. You may even leave the city for a safer home in the country.

You are working hard in your garden, building, fencing, raising livestock and a hundred other tasks required to become self-reliant on your own land.

You’re doing all that work while balancing the needs of your family and the other things in your normal daily life.

You work. You wait and you wait and… And then something happens…

NOTHING

No disaster. No collapse. No end of the world as we know it. To your surprise, the crap never hits the fan. The starving refugees never show up at your door.

It feels like you’ve just been pissing in the wind all this time… but have you wasted your time if nothing ever happens…

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying there isn’t going to be a major disaster or full-blown collapse sometime in the near future (it’s happening now).

My research and reasoning, strongly suggest that it is going to happen soon – no, I can’t give you an exact date and I would be careful of anyone claims that they can.

The truth is disasters happen all the time, even if they haven’t affected you personally yet, they still happen and you may not be lucky enough to avoid the next one.

Over the past few months, I’ve had at least 25-30 people send emails letting me know that nothing was going to happen and if it did that they would be fine because the government would not let things get “that bad” .

I always respond with a short note, thanking them for their comment and to letting them know, that I hope they’re right, but that I don’t think they are.

I always point out that the U.S. Government has spent billions of dollars to ensure their survival, I then ask them why would they (the Federal Government) do this – if they, with all their inside knowledge, facts, scientist, analyst and intelligence did not think a major world-changing event was going to happen…

Why would they spend billions of dollars preparing for just such an event if we are so safe?

Do they know something that we don’t…

I also like to send them this link to the “67 Worst U.S Natural Disasters” that have happened over the last 103 years – I avoid getting into issues involving economics or other such issues, because these are people are already in denial and would only brush such ideas aside, but everyone, even the most dependent, accept the fact and occurrence of natural disasters.

I’m sure most of you reading this already see the common sense of prepping, but let’s get back to the original question – what if nothing ever happens…

What if another major disaster never happens? Have you wasted your time, money and life with all this prepping stuff? I don’t think so – for me there has always been a great sense of accomplishment in knowing, I am as self-reliant as I can be.

And at least if you are prepared you’ll never have to be one of those people who rush to the grocery store and fight over the last loaf of bread or gallon of milk at the first mention of snow on the news.

If nothing else you will save money, live healthier, have less stress and leave a smaller footprint on the world – what is wrong with that?

What do you think – are you wasting your time by prepping?

About M.D. Creekmore

M.D. Creekmore is the owner and editor of TheSurvivalistBlog.net. He is the author of four prepper related books and is regarded as one of the nations top survival and emergency preparedness experts. Read more about him here.

Comments

  1. j.r. guerra in s. tx. says:

    AN OUNCE OF PREVENTION IS BETTER THAN A POUND OF CURE.

    And if nothing happens – you are no worse off then before. And I don’t think its a waste of time.

    Skills gained are always good – makes you more versatile, can save you money and effort spent if they are called on. Extra food is a cushion if you lose your job or get sick, having less income to spend while you get back on track. You have to eat regardless of good or bad times.

    Changing location because your present one is unsafe – sounds like good advice to me. Natural disasters occur everywhere though, so think before you move – your new place could place you in an even worse situation.

    • MD

      No way are we wasting time and money prepping. As you so aptly put it, at least you have the peace of mind knowing you are prepared far more than most people. That is way reassuring to me. Although my wife thinks I am slightly kooky with all my preps she at least realizes that in any emergency we are well off. This has happened twice when the power went out around here and my back up solar battery bank kept us up until the grid got fixed.

  2. Prepping can be as simple as keeping chainsaws ready to crank up and be used at any time. We had huge storms come through my neck of the woods last night and everyone I’ve checked on has ,limbs or trees down. I got my saws out and sharpened the chains in preparation for these storms. Mixed up the fuel and cranked them all, just to be sure they will crank when I need them,and today I will need them a lot. Preparedness comes in many forms.

  3. As one who has been through a few natural disasters, and as one that was raised in a country in the midst of Civil strife ( Colombia) I can say that anything can happen at anytime! I can recall going through the ordeal of Hurricane Charlie and its aftermath. If I had not had certain things in place, and had my family not had a plan, it could have turned out much worse for us than it did. I would also mention that it took two weeks for us to get back into our house. So how long are you prepared to stay away from home? It is never a waste of time to be prepared. Its like they say in the insurance world, ” its better to have it and not need it, then to need it and not have it”

    • I lived thru Charlie too – was a Realtor in Punta Gorda/Pt Charlotte. Lived less than half mile from Peace River. Eye went over our house…

  4. I question prepping alot, and yes, I do get lax on it now and again, but keep going forward at a pace deemed ”as finances allow”.Prepping is not just stacks of buckets full of pasta, beans, and rice, it is also tools, food processor’s, gardening stuff, vehilce and home maintenance etc,etc.

    A disaster can be many things for different durations, will it be ice and snow? Surgery following an industrial injury, high winds? A terrorist/criminal attack? Will that storm close our highways, will the recovery time from that injury be a few days or stretch into months? Did that attack shut down a city (Boston), or just give you scare? Prepping is many different reason’s, mostly it is peace of mind knowing that some things may be an inconvenience or could turn into a real pain lasting days; Do you have the blocks in place to survive that even semi comfortably?

    • you are right on and i prepped and was pleased to have extra when my husband was injured and had 26 operations, over 6 yrs. my preps kept us going, and I’m still prepping

  5. I don’t question prepping at all. I’ve seen too much in my lifetime to question. AND…having spent many years as a volunteer serving with the American Red Cross….I never once served a family who was prepared for what hit them, and I served very few who weren’t psychologically, emotionally, and physically devastated by what hit them. And, yes, many of them whined and cried because the Calvary didn’t come rushing in to save them. And never will.

    I don’t consider us so much “preppers” as “homesteaders”. Is there really that much difference?

    To the 25 or 30 who wrote in trying to tell you ‘nothing is going to happen’, well….enjoy your present, because your future doesn’t look so promising. Try reading the Bible. You’ll see it.

    • something will happen and soon. It is coming like a thief in the night and it is coming.The god of the bible gave us the bible so that we will have no excuse for not knowing.Revelation is not a book of mystery like false religion likes to say ,it is a book of revelations.

      • You are so right, Axelsteve. The Book of Revelation (one revealing) is a revealing of Y’eshua/Jesus the Christ of Nazareth. He doesn’t give us all the details. I’m sure there is a reason. In fact, He told John on the Isle of Patmos to “seal up” parts of the visions given him.

        Revelation 10:4
        Now when the seven thunders uttered their voices, I was about to write; but I heard a voice from heaven saying to me, “Seal up the things which the seven thunders uttered, and do not write them.”

        He also said this to Daniel, the Prophet.

        Daniel 12:4
        “But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.”

        Daniel 12:9
        And he said, “Go your way, Daniel, for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.

        But what He HAS told us is more than enough, “El Shaddai”.

  6. I will always strive to protect and provide for my family …
    I NEVER want to hear the voice of my family crying for food or protection when I was capable of providing both ….

  7. At the very least, I’m prepping for inflation. And that’s already here. The cheese I bought at $3 a pound is now closer to $6 a pound. What better way to spend any extra money than on things I am going to buy anyway? The banks aren’t going to pay me any interest, and may just decide to keep my measly little bit of savings. “Store what you eat and eat what you store” has never been more true. And using those prepper skills? Well that’s fun and money saving too. Used to be called just plain work.

    • Speaking of banks… we use a small, privately owned local bank. They, like the majority of all banks, have not been paying much interest…less than 1%. So we get this Christmas card from the bank. On the outside it thanks us for being such good customers and they have enclosed a sample of their ‘product’ as a thank you. Opened the card and there is a $2 bill. It cracked me up but the more I thought about it, the stranger it was.

    • PrepperDaddy says:

      I am not prepping, I am pre-buying! My daughter came to visit for Xmas – she thought it was hilarious that I had 6 big boxes of laundry detergent next to the washing machine. I can’t say I will never need to buy soap again but I could lock the gate and not have to leave for a long time. And if the SHTF event does not ever happen, then my kids will have one helluve stockpile of everything.

  8. I hope the nay sayers are correct, but I will keep prepping and have a better life for it. I look at prepping as a lifestyle, not just a plan for disaster. Even if nothing bad ever happened, I have fresh fruit and vegetables in my garden and never have to rush out to the store to get something to eat for dinner. I live better today, because I am ready for tomorrow. If the crap ever does hit the air mover, I will continue living pretty well.

  9. Mystery Guest says:

    Let’s see————–Nope, can’t say it is.

  10. Although society has not collapsed (yet), and there has been no great disaster on a world-wide scale that would test my preps, I have had my personal SHTF several times. Each time, I relied upon my food storage, etc., to get us through, which allowed me to use the little bit of money we had coming in on life’s necessities, such as financial obligations and lawful requirements (gone are the days where we aren’t required to have insurance, or lights in a house where children are present.)
    It might not have been considered important to prep from the viewpoint of others, but they did notice I didn’t have to get help from the state to buy clothes, or medicine, or food, or even school supplies for my children. The town was small enough to walk to work, even in the cold.
    Three times I have depleted supplies and built them back up. My kids get it now. They do the same, though if they’d not had the experience of needing those preps, they might be among those who believe it unimportant.
    My DH and I believe that prepping and self-sufficiency can be a way of life, without casting you outside the apparent “mainstream” of life.
    Point is, we never know what “disaster” might hit us personally, either. Job loss, death or illness in the family, a sudden move to a different part of the country for work, a lot of things can happen, and when they do, being ready takes a burden off the mind and lets you concentrate on greater things.
    Maybe the “big event” won’t happen in your lifetime. We don’t know. There are parts of the world where such “big events” are happening, and many of those people weren’t prepared for sudden evacuations or flight away from trouble. There parts of the world where the fires of conflict and chaos could happen at any time, but it seems only some of those are ready. The rest will go where the wind blows them.
    Such an event could conceivable spread to our part of the world. It seems the agents of chaos are quite willing to bring it. I would say, like the old preppers said. “Better to have it and not need it, that to need it and not have it.”
    Keep the faith, wolfies.

  11. I have fun with it and enjoy all of my new training. Started some bush-craft this year with more on the agenda for 2016. Have fun with it is my motto…

  12. Lurker Judith says:

    When I was in my 20’s, I lived in rural Upstate, N.Y. miles from anywhere. DH worked down in the city and had a company car.
    To make a long story short Dh came down with an almost fatal case of the flu and while he was delirious out of his head with fever, his boss drove up from the city with another employee and took the car. This left us stranded and at the mercy of a severe winter storm. Ever since then I vowed to never be dependent on anyone else EVER! It has held us in good stead more times than I can count though all the normal disasters like landlords selling your rental out from under you to jobs down the drain. Who needs Teotwaki? Normal life deals out enough blows that being prepared cushions.

    • It would appear that these “bumps in the road” have made you a wise woman, Lurker Judith. It has been said that successful people are not measured by lack of conflict, but by how they respond to life’s conflicts. We’re all going to have them – no getting out of it. We live in a fallen world. Give yourself an ‘attagirl!” for taking the high roads.

    • You are absolutely right Judith. Prepare for LIFE. It can smack you down many more times than a SHTF scenario.

      Just look at this past week. Severe winter storms, flooding, tornados, wildfires (in my area, at least). There’s something every month that affects a whole lot of people. Why wouldn’t you prepare to weather things like that? Only foolish people go into seasons, especially winter, not thinking about what could happen.

      If for no other reason prep for the weather in your area. You’ll be better off than the majority of your town.

  13. Utilities will go up. I like to shoot. I really like to eat. Retirement and inflation will decrease my cash flow.

    What if nothing “happens”. These things I mentioned will, so I use “extra” money, spent now, to buy things I WILL use in the future.

    “Hardening” my home with extra insulation, multiple water and waste systems only makes sense; spending today’s dollars on tomorrow’s expenses.

    I’m still shooting 9mm and 40 S&W I bought years ago, on case lot sale, for $6 & $7 a box. Still goes “bang”. I still enjoy it. and now it’s more like $11 and $17/box.

    Been tracking food prices lately? After a trip to the store for the “case lot” sale I put the money we spent in terms of savings and just buying it in the future when I need it. At the current savings rate, I would have to have over $100,000 in the bank, let it sit there and take out only the interest, just to pay the difference between the sale price and the “today’s” regular price. This does not count the “natural” increase in the regular price. Since I don’t have quite that much just “sitting around doing nothing productive” (Liberal speak), I chose food.

    Having property with a well and sewage means that I am responsible for maintaining my resources, not paying for emergency repairs when the city “loses” a water main, or (due to lack of Preventative Maintenance), the pump at the sewage treatment plant goes out. Maintaining my own equipment and resources also prevents cost increases due to Civil Union increases in pay, health care cost compensations, and retirement payments.

    When was the last time we did not have inflation, year to year? And what happens to your disposable income with the Federal deficit comes due?

    So, call it foolish to “prep” for a “non-event”, but this is what I see coming. To those who “call me crazy”: Anyone out there have a better way to mitigate these issues?

    • Yup. Just paid $3.88 a pound ON SALE for our preferred brand of sweet cream butter. Paid $3.48 for it last month, same store, on sale. A little more than 11% price increase in one month. Just one of many examples. Wal-Mart has become equal to every other grocery on many of its items, in case someone has not yet noticed. No longer the “low price leader”. Guess they have to cover that $15.00 an hour minimum wage they’re promising somehow.

  14. Oh let’s see. I have car insurance and hope I never need it . Life insurance do you really want to need it? Homeowners insurances but who wants to need to file a claim ? Preps are be it supply’s or skills are there just in case just like insurance .
    That said last wensday night I spent an extra 3 hours getting home. That was 3 hours of cutting and clearing trees . Part of my trucks EDC is a chain saw , 2 axes and rope . Tornadoes kill 2 within 3 miles of me as the crow flies. This same stretch of ” road ” I have spent 18 hour clearing from trees in the past. My preps are never doubted as to there value.

    • If there’s any good news in the promise of everything imploding, it may be that we won’t have to pay all these “insurance premiums” any more. Not like they’ll be of any use.

    • Glad you are okay fixit. So sorry for those who were victims of this storm front.

  15. marine mike says:

    I like to tell people its like believing in God. If I’m wrong so what, I still lived a moral and upstanding life. If I’m right, I’ll watch you rot in H E double toothpicks!
    With prepping I have lessened my foot print on the earth and it keeps me busy and active always learning new things.

  16. Peter Garner says:

    Interesting point. As an example, Christmas day here was a “normal” day, but on the 26th, our area (Calderdale, West Yorkshire, UK) got a month of rain in a day. We’re on high ground, so we escaped, but villages surrounding us are completely flooded out, and in reality it’s a regional emergency. I don’t know how many people here are preppers, but judging from the reactions, not many were. So the point is that yes, you really, really should prep, even if you think it’ll never happen to you!

    • Greetings, PG, from across the pond!

      In “another life”, we made good friends from a number of London Business School grads who lived with us while they did their internships in our company. We are all retired now. Some did quite well, others, not so much. That’s the way it works, isn’t it?!

      Glad you are okay. If this is your real name, you might not want to use it here. Come up with an alias – unless, of course, you’ve already thought of that! Stay safe in an unsafe world!

    • All I can say is WOW Peter. Some serious damage there. I didn’t see too many places with sand bags? I suppose the council house people will be the first to whine along with the yobs.

      I checked Norfolk area and it seemed okay…for now anyway. I have cousins in King’s Lynn.

      Sure glad you are safe and sound on higher ground. Stay safe Peter.

  17. I bet the people in texas, new mexico, Oklahoma, Kansas all wish they would have been better prepared. my prayers go out for them. one does not have to prepare for the worst case scenario but one should be prepared for at least something. the people out on the east coast know first hand how slow the government can be in responding and the seat of our federal government is already there. if a person depends on them helping well you better have your funeral plans prepaid for because you ain’t gonna make it.

    • Lurker Judith says:

      You can only do so much to prepare. One time back in the 90’s I tried to figure out someplace safe to move having just been in at least 6 earthquakes. Every place I came up with had some kind of severe drawback. Conclusion? There isn’t any place completely safe to live. And a lot of places have hidden drawbacks that you don’t find out about until you live there.
      So the only thing I know to do is to prepare the best you can for the known hazards your area faces (like tornado shelters) and supplies positioned outside my house in case of a big earthquake. And hope like heck that nothing unforeseen comes down the pike at ya.

  18. Grannytraveler says:

    I agree with everyone – What constitutes a SHTF anyway? I started prepping over 30 years ago when I was a substitute teacher. Stocked up on food, etc…, so that I could get through the summer with my family with no additional income. Had a garden also. My husband’s job just paid for the fixed bills. We always camped for our vacations. Good prepping skills for everyone to learn. I seriously got into major prepping just before the earthquake in Haiti. I just woke up on January 1 and heard a little “voice” in my head say “start prepping seriously.” That has been my New Year’s resolution ever since.
    Now I am still working full time, but I’m getting closer to 70 and both my husband and I consider my preps as part of our retirement supplies. If we both pass then my preps go to my kids. My daughter is a little on board with prepping but she has a constant argument with her husband about the necessity of some things.
    I am prepping just for what LIFE brings and I want to make sure that my grandkids have enough to survive.

    • I’m with you on this one, grannytraveler. A personal shtf situation can be just as devastating as an external one – illness, unemployment, eviction, investment losses, death, major weather crisis, etc. One that many of us have been thankful that we prepped to get through the difficult period because they all involve losses of many sorts.

      I came on board a few years ago and have told my kids that if I should pass on then they are to split everything between them, because it’s mostly for them that I’ve prepped.

      As for the doubters, I think it was covered well in the film Deep Impact, where a select number of people are chosen to enter safety bunkers and the rest left to die. Naturally, all the government people and their families were selected. It may have been just a film but it sure covered today’s reality.

      Doubters also remind me of a piece of scripture, Prov. 23:9: Speak not in the ears of a fool; for he will despise the wisdom of thy words.

  19. Lessee, I have a choice between life of ease or a life of endeavor….

    By endeavoring or striving I increase my possessions, my knowledge, my sense of self worth & my ability to help others…. Don’t the 7 Cardinal Virtues come into play here?

    If I choose a life of ease, am I the fool described in The Book of Proverbs, devouring all he has?

    If no catastrophic occurrence occurs, am I ahead of the game? Sure, my perishables can be donated. Saving & investing are what help an economy. These allow $$$ to be put into capital goods. Capital goods allow the business owner to do the work of many, w/1 machine.

    Somebody(s) will be needed to operate the machine/capital good. Somebody to produce/sell the parts needed to improve/repair are needed. Somebody to service it is necessary. Somebody needed to buy the good/service provided.

    By my using the graces/virtues of fortitude, thrift, forebearance, etc. I have enabled others to improve their lot.

    Of course the bikini clad beauty makes the choice something that requires ??????

    • Naw. We’re not the fools of Proverbs. Those are the ones who say there is no need.

      We’re ANTS. (chuckle)

      Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest.
      Proverbs 6:6-8

  20. Owl Creek Observer says:

    Having spent many years of our lives in colder parts of the country, we learned a long time ago what it takes to remain warm, dry and safe when the weather turns bad and it’s nearly impossible to go anywhere or do anything except for what we’ve prepared for. Over the years we’ve stretched out that “survival window” by quite a lot as we recognized that snow and cold temperatures weren’t the only potential threats. I believe our nation is more unstable now — for a variety of reasons — than at any time in my life and I’ve continued to prep in response to that. And if most of our preps are still intact when we pass on, so what? Someone else will make good use of them.

  21. The answer is “NO”, we’re not wasting our time.

    However, after last night, I found that what I’m doing leaves a lot to be desired. I live on Shoal Creek in Joplin, MO. Beginning on Saturday, we have received over 10″ of rain. The patio to the house normally sits about 20 or so feet above the creek. Yesterday morning, the creek was up, but not any higher than I’ve seen it before. About 1pm it was up about 6ft and then it took off. Over the next seven hours, it rose over 9 feet. By the time we had evacuated at 9:30 last night, the “creek” was only 4 ft below the patio level (and the bottom floor of the house). We are in the process of moving and had already moved the furniture out of the bottom floor on Thur/Fri. Everything else had to go to the top floor. When I went back this morning, the water had receeded about 5 feet. Unfortunately, the two houses next to us flooded as did the small subdivision about a mile away. The county had Gators and flat boats running across the pasture-land to pull out people that were flooded in. One apartment area flooded that was built just above the 500-yr flood line.

    We definitely should have run a trial bug-out at some point, and will make some revisions to what we’re doing. We were very lucky this time.

    • So glad you’re okay. There is no greater teacher than experience, no matter the subject, eh?!

    • Oh no Mark. Did your house get any water inside? The whole state is flooding. We are in NE MO with more rain on the way. It appears the MIS and MO rivers are going to converge. I sure hope the Delta is prepared.

      Prayers for you and your family. Please keep us posted.

  22. Drakenstead says:

    This brings to mind my BPP (Basic Prepper Principal)
    If an accusation of an item or a skill does not enhance my life in the here and now it most likely will be useless in an “Event”

    We purchased a Country Living Grain mill at around $400. I’m told as usual by the usual suspects that I’m an idiot as “nothing” is going to happen. However, once these same folks taste bread baked from fresh ground flour they are in awe of the taste.

    I carry trauma response kit in my truck which was an investment of no small consequences in both acquisition of materials and training. One of those usual suspects riding with me told me that I was silly as nothing was going to happen and besides I was not qualified to be a first responder. An hour down the road we came upon a roll over with one of the three victims severely injured and bleeding out. I grabbed my kit and a blanket and got the bleeding under control holding until the medics got there half hour later.

    My sister (one of the most vocal of the usual suspects) was staying at the house last year when I did one of our regular generator tests. She actually screamed at me for spending money that could have been used to “help the poor”. While she was here a blizzard knocked out power. My generator gave us the power to maintain basic heat, water and service for the three day outage.

    I can list a very long list from the better taste and nutritional value of our homegrown & preserved vegetables and meat, our eggs, our tools and ability to fix about anything that breaks right here but the usual suspects ignore an keep screaming.

    No nothing is useless except for quite a few of the people I know

  23. mom of three says:

    I agree with everyone, and everything said most of us will have personal problems, that use up resources. I have taken times off of prepping mostly because I wanted a break, or needed to save money, or just not spend the money. I now just look around for sales, or deals and if I don’t find them I really don’t need it.

    • I love that my pantry is so well stocked that I can bypass things that most people HAVE to buy and wait for the sales. When you have 40 pounds of chicken in the freezer you can walk right by it when it’s $3 a pound and wait for another sale. No problem, cause you’re not going without.

  24. 16 yrs ago we sold a smaller place in the country and moved to a little bigger place with a well and yr rnd spring which is 20 miles from town. Our third bedroom is our prep room, once a month wife takes inventory and makes a list, we only by what we need if it’s on sale, this saves a lot of money. We worry about natural disasters more than anything, and because we are isolated one of our biggest preps is keeping track of ways to get home beside the main road. Living any other way is not a option, it is well worth the effort it took to get here.

    • We’re with you. Some may have thought it strange that we moved to an isolated area and bought a 5-bedroom home in retirement. It’s an old house. But it’s still 5 bedrooms. I expect they will all be needed soon enough, and the one most underground is a great pantry.

  25. Alphadog241 says:

    I look at prepping as a tangible form of insurance, and I hope I never need it. Kind of like life, auto, home and health insurance, I spend a lot of income on them, but hope to never make a claim. Besides, I can go camping anytime I want to spread my wings into “roughing it” with a family of five, then return home at the end of the weekend. I don’t really look forward to the day that forces me to live in a state of high alert, and struggling to keep my family fed and healthy. I like to focus on the preps that never expire, such as teaching my kids to make prepping a part of their lives as they leave the nest, learning a trade/skill, eating healthier from my garden, and fun days at the range.

  26. When I found this blog, I wasn’t really doing anything to prep for disasters outside of making sure I had a couple of flashlights and candles for when the power went out.
    Growing up, we lived with my grandparents to help them as they were older and needed help, but it wasn’t until I was older that I realized the real reason we stayed with them was because my dad seemed to fear he couldn’t provide adequately for all of us as the parent. I grew up with his constant fear, but I was wired more toward being independent, and seeing this life lesson first hand made me the Prepper I am today.
    It just made sense to be prepared, so I learned self-sufficiency skills but got away from those life lessons when I got my dream job. In my hear, I didn’t need to do that anymore because I had a great job with good benefits and retirement, so I was set.
    I lost my job 13 months before my retirement date, lost my benefits and I was living mainly paycheck-to-paycheck. What a reality check….I did find employment within 30 days, and vowed to not let something like this happen again without being prepared, so no matter whether what I prepare for now ever happens or not, I have ‘Peace-of-Mind’ that my family and I are better off than most.
    Jeremiah 29:11

    • For I know the plans I have for you…plans to prosper you…plans to give you a future and a hope.

      2 Chronicles 26:5
      As long as he sought the Lord, he was made to prosper.

      Grace and peace to you, and all that is yours,

  27. Patriot Farmer says:

    My preps have been worth every minute and every dollar I have spent. Even if the economy never collapses, EMP strikes, or a major attack disrupts the country, I dip into my preps for family emergencies and go through weather emergencies every year. My preps are for peace of mind and security for my family and neighbors. Money and time well spent.

  28. swabbie Robbie says:

    I am sitting at home in a big snowstorm today. Cancelled appointments in my office 43 miles away because the prediction is 8 to 12 inches of snow and some freezing mix around home commute time. The snow started here at 10:30. I ran into town at 9am (8miles to my local town) to get a couple packages in the mail and made a bank deposit. While In town I called my wife to see if there was anything she thought of we should pick up. Neither of us could think of anything. This is what general prepping is good for even if there never is a big collapse.
    When I got home all I needed to do was start the snow thrower to make sure it would run. Ditto our generator. I let it warm up and put threw the switch to have it run the house to make sure it was working right under load. The third thing was cut some firewood and stack some in the house and some on the porch. ( We have always used wood for our primary heat, propane for secondary).
    Rural life leads one to prepping naturally for getting through hard winters and closed roads. It is not a big leap to prepare for worse situations.

  29. Prepping has become a habit. I think a very necessary habit. I grew up in a family that always ‘put by’ for the winter. It is a natural thing to my husband and me and now to our children and grandchildren.

    This summer my husband and I spent time in the hospital. We both came down with pneumonia (fortunately not at the same time) and he was hospitalized a second time for sepsis. I was thankful for many things during that time–he lived through the crisis although he is still recuperating, my daughter lived close by and could care for her father while I was hospitalized, and I didn’t have to go shopping for groceries since I had a freezer and cupboards full. I hate shopping and was glad that the preps got us through. The government and mother nature don’t necessarily have to be the cause of disaster. But, being prepared for any contingency is what prepping is all about. It is never a waste of time.

  30. I suppose I have always been a prepper to a certain degree. When my husband was killed, I was left with 5 children all under the age of 5 to support.

    Feeding and clothing my brood was a trial and error situation. If a fabric store was going out of business, I was there buying up many, many yards of fabric for their clothes. I did the same thing with shoes. I would catch a good sale and buy shoes for when their feet grew and they seemed to grow daily.

    Food? Yikes! We grew a lot of veggies and had several fruit trees in the back yard. Every time there was a lot sale, I was there stocking up. Coupons, coupons and more coupons helped a lot. Buying beef by the side helped in saving money and kept the freezer full for many, many months. Normally, I had at least 3 – 4 months food in reserve. For that period of time, it was a lot.

    Now, do I think prepping is a waste of time? Nope, I sure don’t. Over the decades my reserve stocks have served me well. Why would I stop now? The only difference between then and now is….I have more choices of foods and more ways to store long term. Personally, I think prepping is the only way to be. In the long run, it is not money squandered, it is money saved.

  31. MD, preppping is the only way of living for me. The overall plan is a grid down situation short, month long, or year(s) long. Prepping for grid down covers most other types of emergency situations; snow or ice storm, major flooding like right now in this area, social unrest, or just plane being short of cash for food. I am on Social Security and a teacher’s pension. Both of them are not large as I started working outside the home about age 40. When my late DH and I bought this place we wanted a place our grown kids and grandkids would have a place to live even if they need to resort to a tent. DH in the early years in Ohio was laid off late fall every year for 2-4 months. I had boys with ADHD and did not want them to eat processed food so I had a hugh garden that filled the freezer and canning jars. Now, I have to wonder if I can depend on my Social Security and Pension (based on the stock market). If not, I am developing small businesses to get the money to pay my taxes. Other than that, the land and bartering will keep food on the table. Replacing grain will be the toughest issue we will face. Eventually the grain may be primarily corn. Too hot/drought mixed with too much rain at other times would result in little production. This year has been different. I moved a DGD and her fiance into the house as they both hit bottom money wise. The preps have gotten us through the year. They are now employed and almost caught up and the pantry looks good. I am at the point of canning, dehydrating, and buying dehydrated vegetables for longer storage. As said above, life gives a body grief when least expecting.

  32. Genealogist58 says:

    MD I sleep better at night knowing that I have done everything I can to help my family prepare. Both my wife and I grew up with parents that had lived through the depression, and the stories they told were incredible.,

  33. patientmomma says:

    In 1998, I was laid off my job and did not get a job for 8 months…lived on savings and preps. In 2002, the company I was working for went bankrupt-closed its doors over the weekend…lived on preps for 6 months until I got a job with the Navy. In 2004, 3 hurricanes hit Orlando FL within 3 months resulting in many closed roads, empty stores, interrupted power, closed offices…stayed home because I had preps; while others drove 55 miles north to get supplies. In 2006, had major surgery, off work for 8 weeks…had preps—no need to worry. In 2010, a tornado hit near my community; down trees, closed roads, 6 days without city power…had preps, generator, chain saws, no worries, helped my neighbors. In 2012, a 1000 year flood hit my area, 5’ of water in office building and around work community, no power, people evacuated… I worked from my house on a hill above the water, powered by generator, had preps, did not leave the house for over 12 days; helped my neighbors.

    Add all that to the USA and world economy falling apart, terrorism threats, religious prophecies of the last days, and what all the others have said. . . Prepping is not a waste of time.

    • I love that last little bit you repeatedly add: “helped my neighbors.” That’s really what it is about, isn’t it? Being prepared puts you in position to help not only yourself but others. I think sometimes people see prepping as selfish or fearmongering when really it’s just being prudent, and to some extent generous-minded.

      One of the hardest lessons I had to learn was I couldn’t help others like I desired to do as long as I was imprisoned by lack, debt, and poverty. It wasn’t until my husband and I put boots to ground and positioned ourselves to be prepared that things changed.

      Then we discovered that little talked about side benefit to prepping: extra. Extra to give, to share, to help, to bless… Prepping taught us how to turn “never enough” into “more than enough” on every level.

      And though there are many more reasons why prepping isn’t a waste of time, the benefits of “extra” is my primary one.

      • For years I tried to save/prepare 4 retirement… for nearly the same number of years I tried to convince others of the success I found by CHANGING MY BEHAVIORS to proven successful behaviors. Seeing a few who had done it & following their ‘lead’ got it done for me.

        Very few I tried to show ‘the how tos’ were willing to listen. Hence they bemoan their lack of readiness. Some will stick their faces in water to drink, others will cup water into their hands & watch their surroundings- for an opportunity or a sneak attack.

        Make the best of situations, always. Don’t take advantage of others’ ignorance, help when you can….

        Beware those w/2 faces. Don’t divulge info which can boomerang on you, even those who are trustworthy. Loose lips sink ships. Op sec job 1.

  34. i’m kinda at a stand still with my prepping my wife calls me doom and gloom. any more money spent on preps may cause the ultimate disaster, separation from the wife, luckily i have enough of the basics we could get by but worry about having enough for all the kids and grand kids. regarding the comment on how the government is prepping, i read about a year after fema was started they appropriated billions for its budget and only account for 20% of the money then they started finding where they are building underground bomb shelters for the continuation of government. so it sounds like they are preparing to save themselves and leave everyone else to fend for themselves like what happened in katrina where they still haven’t got it back where it should be.

    • Some of that “missing money” may have gone to refurb the Cheyenne Mountain enclave, which has been reopened (Colorado).

    • Mark:

      If you can get her to read 299 Days she just might change her mind. The main character’s wife did.

  35. To me it’s not prepping, it’s just how I’ve always lived. With grandparents born in the 1890’s that saw WW1, survived the flu epidemic, the Great Depression of the 30’s and WW2 and parents the went through the same depression and WW2 plus living in a hurricane zone being ready was just how I was raised. I was able to talk my mother into writing down her memories of life in those times and I still refer to them from time to time. Plus there’s always something new to learn which is reward enough. As my grandfather used to say, “Boy, if you aren’t learning you’re dying”.

    • tommy2rs, I look at it the same way. This is how I have always lived. My parents lived this way & so did my grandparents, & my great-grandparents, altho the grand & great=grands had more land & more production skills. I grow a garden & put up food for winter. I plant fruit trees for shade & use berry bushes for landscaping whenever possible. I stock up when something is on sale. I was taught those behaviors were “living providentially”, to make the best use of one’s resources.

  36. I would like to send you money by mail. What address do I use?

    • Well, it’s…

      oh, wait! You weren’t talkin’ to me, were ya’?

      Sorry, MD. Couldn’t resist.

  37. I agree with you. I occasionally say that my preps will keep me from eating cat food when I retire within the next decade. Prepping is about being prepared for anything. That “anything” can range from disasters that hurt many or personal disasters that only you must survive.
    Prepping is smart and never a waste of time.

  38. My grandparents shared several of the same challenges that tommy2rs’s did with the exception they lived in a cold northern climate. My parents were both raised during the great depression and were concerned with being prepared. We lived in northern Minnesota on an isolated resort. My mother did not have any transportation and we lived 30 miles from the nearest town. We lost power frequently in the summer due to storms but running out of food was not a problem, my mother canned everything and bought things on sale. I remember running out of heating oil on more than one occasion and we had to heat the home with a fireplace. The worst time was when it was -50 below F, we could have frozen to death but I remember my dad calling a Co-op on a Saturday morning begging them to bring us fuel oil from town. Luckily for us a driver felt sorry for us and drove the 30 miles in sub-zero weather to get us the fuel oil. Back in those days trucks were not as reliable as today and that guy risked his life for us – it’s not easy to forget things like that. We were snowed in some years for days on end – no way in, no way out. We could not afford a snowmobile. I have since lived through tornadoes, earth quakes, hurricanes, floods and extremes of temperature, but have never forgotten the lessons taught me by my parents. We have relied on supplies many times during our lives due to economic, health and other reversals. My advice would be to store enough supplies to weather any storm that life will bring and they will come.

  39. Crazy Joe in South Jersey says:

    First …… J J WROTE …… ” I have fun with it and enjoy all of my new training. ” ………. first 5 words are key … I have fun with it … what a great Crazy Joe attitude you have J.J . .

    42 years ago was learn everything back to Colonial America before mason jars were invented , collect everything , have everything while at the same time several bug out plans were in effect . How the heck do I carry all this stuff ? ? ? So by age 30 I reevaluated what prep / survival gear I really needed . Some was dispersed to network members , some sold for cash . We took the view that in the very worst case scenario movement was inevitable . I cannot carry 10 years worth of food . We , the local group , cannot carry the collected 1000 years worth of food . So in regards to food I have chosen to keep it at a 3 to 4 month supply on hand for 2 people . If something is so severe I would need a 10 year supply I have 3 months to figure out my next plan .

    As MD asks ” so what if nothing happens , ever ? ? ” …. I will continue to have fun learning about bee keeping , chicken diseases , blossom rot on veggies and other such way of life endeavors .

    J. J. ………. KEEP ON HAVING FUN ! Throw a prep party / BBQ / cookout / Hawaiian Luau like I do on occasion .

  40. MsBlindSpot says:

    I look at prepping as a lifestyle, rather than an either/or thing to do. I have always enjoyed a homesteader/pioneer way of life, and live that way to whatever extent I can. The satisfaction in home-grown, home-cooked, home-stored food and home-made goods is immense. I believe living this way is a direct connection to the land and the Spirit and our souls.

    With this as a base, it’s an easy bridge to prepping for disasters, man or nature made. I choose to not live in fear of such things and prepping for them as reasonably as possible gives one confidence in dealing with what comes along. Some things cannot be survived and that’s as it should be. I have no expectation of that. We were not meant to live forever. But, we can be wise and use common sense and awareness of what’s going on around us to prepare as best we can.

    The only way I think time would be wasted in prepping is if we got our priorities skewed and gave more importance to something unimportant than we should. Or if we spent time and money prepping when our families, jobs, and/or communities needed that from us NOW. I’m not a believer in a “bunker” mentality…one of “hole-up” alone and fight it out. We are interactive creatures…interdependent…and we’ll suffer if we isolate.

    The bottom line for me is that ‘prepping’ is just common sense, when done reasonably, and while living daily life as we go. It’s a balance, like all things are.

    Prep on everyone!

    • MsBlindSpot says:

      And on that note: I went ahead and purchased that propane indoor “Buddy” heater, and just in time. Woke up to ice & snow covering everything this AM. The power was still on, but we have several more days of cold weather ahead, so who knows. Now…I am much more relaxed about it as I know we have a way to be warm….whether I have to use it, or not.

  41. livinglife says:

    The recent weather tearing up lots of states is reason enough to prep

    • Perhaps “El Nino” will have some positive effect, after all?!

      • I hope you are right…. for now the tree huggers are a gloating over the suffering…. given karma, I ask: will al gore resurface to be seen as a bigger ass? No prayer necessary on this one…..

  42. After midnight on Y2K I had a shadow of doubt. As the months wore on in 2000, I got a bit sick of Spam, Dinty Moore, and tuna. As I considered life, I came to the conclusion that keeping prepared was prudent. I still have PM’s and ammo from those days. So my timing was off. I’m sure with more life experience we’re that much more ready. There is something in the air. Things are more unstable now than at any point in our nation’s history. We have a weak,socialist, Muslim- sympathizing globalist Bolshevik in the White House and our national enemies know it. Interesting times ahead and I’m glad to be prepared.

    • A family member recently said to me, in response to a comment on the need to “be ready”, “Oh, you’ve been saying that for years!”. And it’s true, I have been saying for years “be ready”. For what? Doesn’t matter. BE READY – FOR ANYTHING, AT ANY TIME, FOR ANY REASON. My response to this family member? “You’re right! I have been saying this for years. And nothing ‘big’ has happened YET. Just because it has not happened YET, does that mean “it” isn’t going to happen? No, it does not. It only means we’ve had more time to prepare, and I’m thankful for that. My only regret is that I didn’t start saying it sooner.”

    • Crazy Joe in South Jersey says:

      ” We have a weak,socialist, Muslim- sympathizing globalist Bolshevik in the White House ”

      OVERWATCH … I would not have been as nice as you but then I have a rule about what I write in mixed company . Do not get me started on him .

      • test dummy says:

        hey joe are you my crazy uncle? my dad was born in s jersey im the s wing of the hospital and got to texas as fast as he could! we must be related as we think very like minded.

      • LOL Crazy Joe. Please do start anytime. I am not thin skinned. 🙂

  43. Southern Forager says:

    I got a call from my extreme liberal “everything is great, just look at the stock market” mom yesterday where she admitted that maybe growing your own food is a good idea because she has come to the stunning determination that farmers and homesteaders are healthier and live longer. Perhaps buying land and learning skills was a good idea after all…

    I admit I enjoy being prepared even if the SHTF never happens. I like studying plants and successfully growing anything. I like reading the Foxfire texts and other old books. I really love looking at my canning jars filled with food that is so much better than you buy at the store. My kids beg me to bake bread which is gone almost immediately. I love shooting guns and I am really good at hitting targets. I want to learn to fish and hunt. I cringe when I walk into someone else’s house that has maybe three days of food and a stamp size communal back yard. I instinctually fear for their safety. I like knowing what wild plants are edible/medicinal and which that are dangerous. I even enjoy annoying my kids by pointing them out and forcing them to learn.

    I read something recently about a person training to be a warrior in the time of peace. The final quote stuck with me. “I would rather be a warrior in a garden than a gardener in a war.”

    • SF: ooooh….I like that!

      “I would rather be a warrior in a garden than a gardener in a war.”

  44. Having candles, oil lamps, sleeping bags that are good down to zero degrees, little buddy heater etc. are preps but very useful items for anyone to have especially depending on where you live. We live in a rural area of KY and we lose power quite often. We have used our candles, oil lamps, and our propane stove because our whole house is electric. Without these items, we would be in the dark, cold and hungry. There are some people who may seem to go over board but not for them. They have to do what makes them comfortable. As the old saying goes: “better safe than sorry'”. And if nothing major does happen, thank the Lord. People buy insurance and hope they never use it but are absolutely relieved they have it when something happens. So to each his own.

  45. CountryBoy says:

    I do feel sometimes like I am wasting my time but not for the reasons in this article. I worry that no matter how much I put away or prepare, others will just take it from me should things really break down. There is no way I can protect my stockpile from thousands of people coming out of the cities in my direction. I know many will die before reaching me but many more will make it and then what will I do or could I do? I do believe very strongly in helping my fellow man but again, I can’t put enough away for the multitudes.

    As for prepping being of value I like what one other comment said, it is just pre-buying. I have saved much money because I only buy most staples when they are on sale. I hardly ever buy ketchup or mayo unless it is BOGO free. I buy tuna and other canned goods in quantities to get better prices. Even meat can be canned for a later time so when I can buy pork from Sam’s Club at $1.68 per pound and put it up, why not? I just opened a can of meat the other day that was two years old so I probably bought it at half of what it costs today. That added to the stuff of my own that is grown, shot or caught and then canned it saves me even more.

  46. Just saved us $150+ today. The front door latch ($129.99 to replace) fell apart. After an hour of searching I found an internal parts diagram. This let me disassemble the old lock, find the problem, replace the missing part (a screw), tighten the remaining internal screws (more problems averted). Labor would have been $25 for the house call and $20/hour, plus the replacement part(s) or a new handle if they just replaced it.

    This does not count the satisfaction of doing the job myself.

    P. S. it was 16 degrees outside, so things took a little longer as I did it in short periods.

  47. way out west says:

    Just think what would have happened if Noah didn’t listen to God and prepare?

  48. JD from NY says:

    Prepping came hard to us. DH had a near fatal motorcycle accident colliding with a deer back in end of ’07 when the bottom was falling out of the economy. We had a couple of months of food as my father taught us when we were little ALWAYS have a couple months of food in the house just in case. How little did I realize what he meant by that until our personal SHTF happened. After paying off all our medical bills and huge debt that we occurred during his hospital stays and recovery time we slowly started prepping “just in case” something else happened. Well 4 yrs ago DH had to go in for emergency surgery and our preps kept us fed, clean, and warm (always have extra wood now for the wood stove) so we didn’t have to worry except just paying the mortgage. We slowly restocked again and 2 yrs ago DH suffered a stroke, God blessed us and he got up and walked out of the hospital but yet again we relied on our preps to get us through. DH is my biggest fan and now wants to make sure we have a minimum of 1 yr in preps, MORE if possible. So NO prepping isn’t a waste of time – it’s a life saver! Oh to you folks out there who believe the g-men will come and save your butts think again. DH applied for SS disability and was flatly denied. Half his body was busted up, bruised heart, bruised spleen and could barely feed himself but was told he could work! When we talked to a lawyer we were told because we owned a house (with mortgage) and 2 cars (10yrs old) that we didn’t qualify AND on the side he said because DH was a white middle age man he would have to go through hell to get any disability. YEP gov to the rescue! He didn’t bother applying after the stroke because he said he doesn’t want any help from any of the alphabet soup agencies and we will get by just fine when God is with us. Remember when you feel helpless God does provide for all your needs just trust in him!

  49. Well, I remember Y2K. At that time I was in a baby-boomer yuppie mindset and I thought people hoarding beans and bullets were crazy. Since then, I have been through personal SHTF life changes and gradually came to realize that the only one I can count on is myself. I grew up with always having hurricane supplies but never took it beyond that until a few years ago. I think it was the extreme weather events that pushed me over into serious prepping. I really want to retire before I can’t enjoy life so prepping will help with that. Also, I just watched Deep Impact this past weekend and consider it to be a warning for what little the government can or will do.

    • Labgirl- TY 4 comments. It is a shame that life throws some terrible ‘curve balls” @ everyone. But they may also be blessings, we often thereby ‘reform’ our priorities/mindset! Often for a better quality of life….

      A ‘Prepparant Reformation’? (Ouch! Sarcastic puns often hurt!)

  50. Southerncross says:

    I had a concern about if a financial collapse would ever happen mainly because it’s difficult to find legitimate people who really think it is coming. Bill Orielly is about it. I have doubts about other people out there because most or all of them are making money from the people who want to prepare for it. Most are selling precious metals or books or financial advice. I think Glen Beck is sincere in his beliefs but he is also a conspiracy theorist. There are few voices that you can trust.

    There is one guy though that is very legitimate and warns people about the collapse. Laurence Kotlikoff is an economic expert who has testified before congress. According to him, politicians have hidden the real size of the debt from us for many years. The government will only classify certain financial obligations as debt. It doesn’t classify a great deal of other obligations as debt. Kotlikoff gives an example in one of his articles: if you own a T bill, the government considers the financial obligation to pay you as debt. But it doesn’t classify Social Security as debt even though the government is obligated to pay you. Kotlikoff estimates the true debt of the us government as 210 trillion. He has warned that there is no question about a coming collapse. He has stated that if people knew the true size of the us debt, they would drop the dollar tomorrow.

    The Government Accountability Office somewhat supports this conclusion. In its Jan 2013 audit, it makes the statement that without changes the government will continue to face an unsustainable fiscal path.

    The government will not change its fiscal policies until something terrible happens and people rise up to force it to change.

    So this is why I continue to believe there is a serious financial disaster coming. This is why it makes sense to continue to prepare

    • Southerncross,

      Conspiracy theorist = a person who does not believe everything that they are told by the government and others in positions of power and authority… if you don’t ask questions then how do you find the answers. Plus a lot of the conspiracy theories in the past have been now been proven to be correct.

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