By Brian Duff
The most significant contributing factor to creating a solid prepping plan is mindset. Having a proper mindset is the initial requirement to overcome any challenge. Admitting that you need to be better prepared is the first step towards proper prepping plans. Since you’re reading this, it’s probably safe to assume you’ve admitted your needs, or are almost there.
Identify Your Risks
Now that you have your mindset taken care of, you’ll want to identify your risks. Your risks may include child safety, home security, a large-scale long duration event that shakes society as we know it, or anything in between.
Regardless of what you determine your risks to be, your next step should be ranking them by likelihood. In other words, evaluate your risks from the viewpoint of which is most likely to occur.
Once you have the likelihood of risks ranked, you will need to rate them by their impact, should they happen. By identifying, ranking and rating your risks, you will be able to deal with them logically and efficiently.
Plan Your Preparedness
Once you’ve synthesized your risks, you can begin planning your courses of action to achieve your risk-related goals. Ultimately, your goal should be to completely eliminate risk, or at the very least minimize it as much as possible. If for example, you live in a flood plain, you may not be able to stop a flood. However, should you elevate your home, you may be able to minimize the impact of a flood.
When planning to minimize or eliminate a risk, you should do so utilizing the backwards planning method. In this method, you will start at the ultimate goal of eliminating or minimizing risk. With that goal in mind, you will identify everything possible to achieve that goal.
In the example of a house on the flood plain, you may include elevating the home, installing a dike system, or creating a plan to evacuate or move valuables to a higher location, or evacuate them. Regardless of the course of action, all should lead to improved preparedness by working to minimize the risk.
Decide Upon a Course of Action
With your risk mitigation plan in place, you can then evaluate which are the most achievable and effective actions possible. A chief consideration will be to decide which are most time and resource efficient. After all, there are only so many hours in the day and so many dollars in the bank account to achieve your goals with.
Determining which courses of action are achievable and effective is not a complex matter. For example, you may not have the resources to raise your home or to install a dike system around it. While those actions may be unattainable, you can plan for the moving and for the evacuation of your family and its heirlooms.
How Do You Eat the Prepping Plan Elephant?
I know, all of this can be intimidating. How do you plan for and address all of your risks? That’s simple: do the best you can and take it one bite at a time. After all, Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will your preps be completed in a day. Have patience, formulate the plan, and work the plan.
Let’s assume that your course of action is to become self-sustaining for one month. That is, you and your family will be set to survive without any outside resources for 30 days. To achieve that goal, determine your two greatest concerns: having a month’s supply of food and water.
Should you take the time to buy and store a months’ worth of food with no consideration for water? No, because you need both water and food to survive. So what should you do?
The answer is to build your preps in tandem with one another. Rather than holding back on other preps until one is completed, take small bites out of them both simultaneously. This will provide you with an increasing, but constantly improving, level of preparedness.
Improve Your Confidence
By successfully completing your smaller, more immediate goals, you will find that you attain regular wins. These more frequent wins will build your confidence and reinforce that you are moving in the right preparedness direction. Additionally, they will allow you to become prepared more quickly to deal with the more likely short-term scenarios, should they occur. Therefore, while you are creating a prepping plan for a 30-day event, you may find yourself ready should a seven-day event happen. In my opinion, that’s pretty awesome and makes you a lot more prepared than most people.
Lastly, never forget, you’re just one prep away…
If you have any other information, suggestions, or thoughts about planning, please leave a comment below.
Stay safe, secure and prepared.
By Brian Duff
What Is Disaster Preparedness for Families?
Disaster preparedness for families doesn’t require rocket science. What it does require is planning, implementation, and training. When completed, proper disaster preparedness for families helps people prepare both mentally and physically for challenging emergency and disaster situations.
Prior Planning Prevents Piss-Poor Performance
Making a plan establishes a baseline for you to operate from when disaster strikes. To establish this baseline, you must first identify the potential risks facing you and your family. Once you’ve identified the various emergency and disaster scenarios, you need to think through as many potential responses as possible. With your potential responses thought out, you will be set to create your plan.
Creating your plan is the meat and potatoes of improving your family’s safety and security. The first step to creating your plan is to review your potential responses and consolidate those into an action plan. One key to creating your action plan is to keep it flexible so you can efficiently respond to changing and unpredictable situations.
Another key is to ensure your family understands what to do if separated when an emergency or disaster happens. Separated family members need to know how to get ahold of each other and should consider disruptions to communication systems. Depending on the situation’s size, they should also know how to get to pre-selected local and distant meet-up locations.
Lastly, with your plan set, you need to determine what supplies are essential to your success. Once you know what you need, you’ll need to know how much is needed. After all, planning for a Hurricane Katrina-type event does you no good if you don’t have enough food and clean water to last for several days.
Implementation is critical to ensuring your plan runs as smooth as possible. The most important aspect of plan preparation is discussing it with your family. When reviewing the plan, you need to talk about the various types of disasters that may affect your family.
You will also need to explain why the plan is necessary. Doing so will help everyone understand why you are planning and preparing. Keep in mind, when discussing this with your children, it is important that you avoid scaring them. Also, don’t forget to ask for your family’s feedback about the plan. You just never know—they may add an excellent idea.
Another important part of implementation is to discuss your plan with others whom you may rely upon during an emergency or disaster. For example, if your plan includes heading to Uncle Bill’s house in the mountains, you may want to discuss it with him first. When doing so, you will resolve potential problems and possibly identify ones you didn’t know existed.
Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. ~ Aristotle
Once your plan is ready to go, it’s time for you to train, train, and train some more. Training provides you with the opportunity to test and evaluate your plan. As you do so, your family will also become more familiar with it. When they do, they will be better able to deal with the situation when it happens.
Remember, when training, you should follow the crawl, walk, run philosophy. Begin your training by talking through the plan and asking your family questions about the details of the plan. Doing so will reinforce the plan in everyone’s mind. Next, conduct a walkthrough of the plan so everybody sees it unfold in slow motion.
Finally, practice the plan at a safe but faster pace with less warning. The trick is to ratchet up the stress, so when a real event happens, everyone is ready to leap into action.
Don’t forget to practice with any supplies and equipment that are part of your plan. After all, waiting until a disaster happens to find out that you don’t know how to use your supplies and equipment exposes you and your family to increased risk. It’s a risk that is easy to overcome with little effort. So, make it happen.
Lastly, never forget, you’re just one prep away.
If you have any other information, suggestions, or thoughts about disaster preparedness for families, please leave a comment below.
Stay safe, secure and prepared.