One of the major misconceptions about Preppers (besides how kooky we are) is that prepping is something you can do, then at some future point sit back, fold your hands, and say “There! I’m done.”
You are never done with Prepping. It is not a destination, it is a journey.
Becoming a Prepper literally changes your life, and in ways that range from good to wondrous. I honestly can think of no down side to Prepping. But one thing you’ll quickly realize is how it can take over your thinking, affect your decisions, and impact your future. As I said, I believe these are good things.
No longer will you look at your retirement savings and assume with smug superiority that you’re set. Instead, you’ll consider the likelihood of an economic crash or hyperinflation or currency devaluation (all aspects of the same thing) and realize that perhaps money sitting in a mutual fund may not be the safest place to park your savings. You’ll then diversify your portfolio in sensible ways that puts cold hard assets in your hands, not in some distant bank or Wall Street brokerage house.
No longer will you presume the grocery stores will never run out of food, the gas stations will never run of gas, and your employer will never run out of money to keep you employed. While non-preppers argue such thoughts are frightening and counterproductive, I would argue that such thoughts are realistic and we’d all better start thinking of alternatives. When we begin implementing those alternatives, our concerns ease up and we feel more secure.
See? Good. Wondrous.
This journey – prepping – becomes a way of life. You’ll think in terms of cleaning out the cluttered closet and donating unused and unneeded items – and filling that space with buckets of beans and rice instead. You’ll discover all the places in town where bulk foods are cheapest. You’ll learn new and creative do-it-yourself skills such as canning, sewing, and carpentry. Your mind will expand with all the wonderful wisdom you can acquire along with supplies.
That’s why I always chuckle when non-preppers assume Preppers are a gloomy lot, perpetually obsessed with the end of the world as we know it. (Okay, some probably are. We’re not.) Yes, most Preppers are keenly familiar with non-mainstream-media news sources which often emphasize a dark future… but the trouble is, the darkness is there. We know it’s coming. We've just chosen to face it head-on, rather than denying anything could ever happen to us or to our economy. Therefore we will calm our concerns by stuffing our larders with supplies and our brains with knowledge. It’s a lot of fun, really.
Our journey toward prepping has led to some amazing discoveries. I can now grow, harvest, thresh, and grind wheat. (Last year we purchased some extra scythes from a local antique dealer to harvest wheat. He was honestly astonished that these valuable tools would not be decoratively hung on the wall, but instead would be put to good use harvesting our wheat field.) Of course such knowledge may never be critically necessary – perhaps Wonder Bread will be available in perpetuity – but the fact remains, it’s nice to possess some specialized knowledge that most other Americans lack.
But my journey is by no means over. I still would like to learn soap making, candle making, and try my hand at preserving ice blocks through the summer by packing them in sawdust.
See? It’s a journey. There are endless things to learn out there, and prepping gives us a good excuse to learn them.