I want to start off by thanking everyone who’s reading this for your continued support over the last 4 years. This blog, the SurviveInPlace.com course, UrbanSurvivalPlayingCards.com, FastestWayToPrepare.com, and more recently, TacticalFirearmsTrainingSecrets.com wouldn’t have been able to impact nearly as many lives as possible if it weren’t for your help.
As you may have noticed, we moved the blog to a new URL. It’s kind of a big deal. It represents a small part of a major shift in gears that our team is taking in regards to survival and preparedness. As a result, This is one of the most important and most foundational articles that I’ve written in the last 4 years.
SurviveTheComingCollapse.com is going to become one of the early steps of helping to create not only more prepared households but more prepared and resilient communities across the country—and I need your help to make it happen.
Over the last year and a half, the fervor for preparedness has shot through the roof. The upside of this increase in awareness and action has been that more families have become moderately prepared for disasters than at any time since people began abandoning the preparedness lifestyles of the greatest generation and adopting just in time lifestyles that only recently became possible.
Just to be clear on this, preparedness is real to me. The threats that I write about are not marketing ploys…they’re clear and present threats that could quickly and dramatically change our way of life. The personal stories that I share are from my daily life. I write everything with the thought that my friends, family, or even my wife and kids when I’m out of town, might find themselves in a situation where they thrive or suffer based on the quality of products, information, and training I’ve given them. As an example, the SurviveInPlace.com course grew out of the research that I did for my own family’s survival plan. The FastestWayToPrepare.com course grew out of a need to be able to answer panicked calls and emails from friends who thought that they might only have a few weeks to get everything put in place. The decks of cards I’ve created and smaller reports have all followed the same pattern.
You see, I think that it’s incredibly likely that we’ll see an Earth shattering disruption of our way of life in the not too distant future. The particular incident that becomes the tipping point doesn’t really matter…many of the consequences will be the same regardless of whether it is natural, manmade, or a combination. In any case, the advances in technology and just in time supply chains that have made our lifestyles so unbelievably convenient have also made our society unbelievably fragile.
As a result of the sheer number of threats and the consequences of any one of them actually happening, I’m introducing a 4 part push moving forward to prepare for, survive during, respond to, and rebuild after upcoming disasters.
They mesh with our mission statement of:
- Prepare families so they can be the answer to other people’s prayers when disaster happens.
- Equip them to be part of the solution instead of part of the problem.
- Give them the tools they need to quickly create stable micro-environments from which recovery can happen, regardless of whether or not outside help is available.
- Help people prepare in such a way that their lives will be enriched, regardless of whether disaster ever happens.
This mission statement gets fulfilled by breaking up the preparedness process into 4 phases…People try to make the phases linear and sequential but, as with many things in life, it’s not quite that simple. The simplest thing to do is to tell you what they are:
Prepare: This is the most basic of the phases. It includes not only stocking up and learning skills to take care of essentials like psychology, food, fire, water, and shelter, but also areas like medical, trauma, security, general repair, power, mobility, and more. I have and will continue to help people prepare with a mix of trainings that are as fast as possible to implement and trainings that are much more in-depth.
Survive: When a catastrophic collapse happens, the first phase, in many cases, will be survival. It may or may not include lawlessness. It may or may not be any more dramatic initially than losing basic utilities and communication. This is where the fruits of preparedness ripen and have the most value. It is difficult to definitively state what this will look like because of the many ways that we could end up in a survival situation. Is the breakdown in infrastructure and/or civil order local, regional, national, or global? Did it happen because of a virus, catastrophic collapse of the electrical grid, war, total economic collapse, a series of dirty bombs, or something completely different? In all of these cases, the specifics of how things play out will be different, but solid, fundamental preparedness and survival skills and tools will provide a solid foundation to build from. Just as SecretsOfUrbanSurvival.com has been a valuable resource for survival and preparedness information for the last 4 years, SurviveTheComingCollapse.com will continue to be a valuable resource moving forward.
Stabilize: In the event of a breakdown in civil order after a disaster, it’s important to return to a stable situation as soon as possible where it’s relatively safe to walk the streets, conduct commerce, and transport goods from one end of the supply chain to the other.
One theory of stabilization in situations where an insurgent force is trying to destabilize/overthrow a government is to create stable micro-environments. In short, it is the idea of stabilizing an individual block or neighborhood and gradually expanding the stabilized area by creating/repairing infrastructure and eliminating destabilizing forces.
As individuals, we can do this by learning medical skills, learning or honing trade crafts, learning HAM radio communications, becoming a full time, part time, or reserve peace officer, firefighter, or EMS personnel. We can also help our local CERT agencies and/or other volunteer disaster response organizations.
Soft skills, like leadership, decision making, encouragement, nurturing, and counseling are vital during these times as well. If you don’t have the time, ability, or inclination to join any of these organizations, you can still support the ones that you believe in and have the most affinity for. In a disaster situation, first responders have families, homes, and pets that need to be cared for. They have meals that need cooking, errands that need to be run, clothes that need to be cleaned, and sometimes they simply need to be told to stop and take a break. You may not be the point of the spear, but you CAN do things to keep the point of the spear sharp.
I’ve been incredibly fortunate over the years to become friends with US Army Special Forces personnel who have implemented counter-insurgency (stabilization) practices in various hell-holes around the globe. Their door busting stories are fascinating, but their techniques of providing for basic needs and creating safe, stable areas to win “hearts and minds” are what are most valuable and applicable here and I’ll be sharing them with you as we go along.
This is where things get very interesting. There are two distinct types of stabilization: post-event stabilization and pre-event stabilization. Everything I’ve mentioned so far is post-stabilization. Pre-event stabilization is, in many ways more powerful because it can prevent disastrous events from becoming long term collapses. In short, the more stable, resilient, and able to self-support a neighborhood, city, or region is, the quicker it will be able to fix itself and move on when a disastrous event happens. It won’t have to wait on centralized, top down help to show up…it will fix itself from the bottom up. Not only that, an area that has multiple ways to provide for it’s people’s basic needs won’t be impacted as much when one or more of those ways is disrupted.
Finally, as the Godfather of the Resilient Community movement, John Robb, has stated, when insurgents/terrorists are looking for targets, they look for critical points that will give them as much bang for the buck as possible. By focusing on developing stabile and resilient communities, we’re not only increasing our ability to recover from disastrous events, but also making those communities less appealing targets for insurgents/terrorists.
Recover/Rebuild: God forbid we have a “One Second After”, “Jericho“, (EMP) or “Patriots” (total societal breakdown caused by economic collapse) event, but if we do, there needs to be an emphasis placed on long term rebuilding and recovery as quickly as possible. Having a long term goal like this will not only give people a goal and the promise of something better down the road to live for, but also will serve to act as a moral compass. Many inner-city kids who go to jail for murder at a young age have a similar statement when asked why they did their horrific deeds;
“Nobody in the hood lives past 20 (25, 30, or any other young age) so I’m just going to get mine while I can. What do I have to lose?”
Interestingly enough, this same justification for horrific actions has been used by child warriors youngsters committing atrocities around the globe throughout history. Take away hope and the prospect of a future and morality will soon follow. In short, hope is a key component to survival and a vision of what life could look like after recovery and rebuilding will provide that hope.
The rubber hits the road for recovery and rebuilding by taking a look at basics like shelter, long term food security and drinking water. Basic preparedness and short term survival can be taken care of with several storage bins of food, but there has to be a plan in place for sustainable sources of food and water when the larder runs out.
I’ll be introducing you to groups from across the country who are bridging the gap between government agencies and volunteer agencies to quickly and effectively help families after disasters. Stabilization and recovery after long term disasters gets a little more complicated and gets into primitive living skills like gardening, animal husbandry, long term high-volume water purification, and the ability to take care of medical and trauma issues with items that can be found locally or predictably transported, but we’ll continue to cover solutions to these basic, but vital, areas.
Recovery and rebuilding also involves the leadership, strategic and tactical planning, and encouragement skills that we touched on earlier. At some point during recovery, it’s natural and in many ways beneficial to begin specializing and depending on supply chains again…so long as the preparedness and self-reliance skills aren’t abandoned.
As an example, if I ever need brain surgery, I hope I get a surgeon who is a specialist who does nothing but brain surgery. I hope he makes enough that he can pay to have every other task in his life taken care of for him. The last thing I want is to need brain surgery during calving season from a brain surgeon who also happens to raise cattle and who just did an all-nighter pulling a stubborn calf. (There ARE individual and societal benefits to both knowing how to being a jack-of-all-trades / Renaissance man AND having a specialty and outsourcing many of your basic needs to other people.) It would be wise for jacks of all trades not to be too critical of specialists and for specialists to not be too critical of jacks of all trades…the world needs both, and situations may require that you switch back and forth between the two.
What is the intended result of this approach to survival and preparedness? In short, it goes back to the statement I’ve made several times over the years that the more prepared families that an area has, the more stable and resilient it will be when a disaster strikes. By addressing not only the core needs of survival and preparedness but also post-incident stabilization and recovery, we’ll be able to, in some cases, avert disasters and in other cases mitigate the cascading consequences.
But I need your help in a big way.
If you’re active on social media (I’m not, other than announcing new articles) and open about encouraging people to prepare, than I’d ask you to share links to articles and +1 things you like. This not only helps by directly sending people, but the search engines reward sites that have high social media activity with better rankings in the search engines.
If you share preparedness articles with others by email, I’d ask you to share links to articles when I send them out. If you’ve got products that you’d like to write reviews on to let other people know what works and what doesn’t, please let me know. If you’ve got expertise in any area that we write on, please comment. If you’ve got articles that you’ve written on survival or preparedness topics and would like to reach a large audience, let me know. If you’ve got a blog and you’re looking for articles, please feel free to repost articles in their entirety with attribution and working links back to the site. If you have a preparedness website or business and are interested in selling some of our high quality products, please let us know by commenting (start it off by using the comment box where it says “Speak Your Mind” (not the Facebook box) and saying, “please don’t post”) and we’ll give you all the details. If you’ve got a great (completely finished) product that would be a good fit for the preparedness market, please let us know.
In short, we’ve got something special with this audience. A HUGE percentage are military and law enforcement who see the threats and vulnerabilities that we’re facing on a daily basis and want to protect their families. It’s also an incredibly educated bunch…both in terms of street smarts and book smarts. It’s also an incredibly helpful and collaborative bunch, as evidenced by the conversation threads after each week’s article and on the forum, and we are in a position where we can really make a difference if we work together.
With that, I want to invite you to check out the new forum at www.SurviveTheComingCollapse.com/forum. There are over 2500 posts in covering almost 500 survival and preparedness topics, including getting spouses on board, firearms, religion and prepping, local meet-ups, and more.
What are your thoughts on the new site? The new forum? How about our mission statement? Anything you’d add/remove? Please share your thoughts by commenting below:
God bless and stay safe,
P.S. If you haven’t taken advantage of the $7 special this week on my Tactical Firearms Training Secrets, I encourage you to do so now. This is an incredible book at an equally incredible price.