Tag Archive: Helping Others


Lets talk…seriously, lets have a dialogue here and now about personal responsibility because at the heart of being ‘prepared’ is the idea of personal responsibility and taking responsibility for your future. Is personal responsibilty dead? Not for those who are ‘prepared’, not for those who deal with life on life’s terms… Its not about fear, its not about being afraid of the unknown nor being angry with politicians or corporations nor about feeling like the sky is about to fall in, though certainly these can all be catalysts and a spring board for wanting to be prepared and personal responsibilty is often at the heart of people doing the right thing…(is that why we are so fascinated with the news? are we looking for those who are responsible? examples that justify us in not being responsible ourselves?) It is well known and understood that human beings are generally self-seeking, self-centered and very short sighted…we would do well to remember that this is part of immaturity and that as we age, we are somehow supposed to outgrow this and become ‘mature’, meaning, we become ‘responsible individuals’ and personally responsible for our actions or lack there of and not expect to remain forever in a state of immaturity. The mature adult is rational and can see outside of him/herself and can see beyond the immediate, in the now, moment and can rise above base impulses sent forth from the reptilian part of the brain that seeks only to ensure its own survival and pleasure (though it is useful in dangerous situations!) It seems to me that over the past few decades, that many people have abdicated their personal responsibility in making responsible choices that not only take into account their own wants, needs and desires but those with whom they interact either directly or not. We as a people have chosen, even subconsciously, to allow others to take of us and decide what is in ‘our best interests’ and to ‘make’ us safe for whatever reasons so that ‘we’ may just listen to that part of the brain that tells us ‘if it feels good do it’ and not have to worry about our future and instead, be continual children under the hand of a parent. For some, it is out of necessity because we/they simply struggle to make ends meet and can’t for a moment look up and raise their voices…for others, it is because they made choices and decisions that put themselves in a position where they couldn’t say anything or do anything to help themselves, others, it is simply because they are too wrapped up in ‘getting ahead’ or simply don’t care because, after all, they are ‘safe’ and don’t do anything outside of the ‘norm’ and they aren’t ‘responsible’ for everyone else, aftger all, that is why they vote, so that others can speak for them…the list of WHY people have abdicated their own responsibility for their own lives is long and never straight nor simple. And many of, even though we are, in general, very responsible adults, sometimes make mistakes that cause us to abdicate our personal power/responsibility…to err is human and to gain wisdom is divine from our mistakes…to keep on making these mistakes, well, that would mean we aren’t responsible now wouldn’t it? Now, these are bold statements and may make you angry or sad…and you can disagree on the reasons why I feel that we are a nation of people who have abdicated personal responsibility to others, but we must admit, if all of US and that includes corporations, groups of individuals down to individuals have or had consistently taken personal responsibility for ourselves and actions, then we wouldn’t be living in a country that has a penal system that has exploded, with a social services system that can’t cope, with unemployment running rampant, with big government and regulations strangling businesses and people feeling the need to take to the streets in protest out of anger, frustration and finally waking up to fact that they have been asleep at the wheel for too long and now there is a train wreck in their front yard. Regardless of where you fall politically, religiously, ideologically…regardless of your race, color or creed, the core of being an productive member of society is personal responsibility and doing the ‘right thing’. I am not here to argue the finer points or details, merely to express that personal responsibility is ‘ours’ and ours alone and that as individuals we cannot and should not expect others to take care of us and mind the chickens that we have. To expect others to protect us fully and with our best interests at heart is to invite control over our lives. To expect that others will ultimately know what is best for us and ours is to invite intrusion into our lives and potential upset when we disagree or finally decide that we know what is best for ourselves. To give up our rights as individuals in the name of ‘safety’ is to invite control into our lives that destroys our rights. But to expect that we can do whatever it is that we wish to do without consequences or that someone else will take care of it also invites control of our lives by outside forces. With rights come responsibility and that responsibility ultimately rests on our own individual shoulders and begins with personal responsibility. And THIS is ultimately what is at the heart of anyone who prepares for whatever situation that comes into their lives. It is a guiding force that no one and nothing can take away from someone. To be a responsible individual you cannot go on wild spending sprees with credit cards and then not pay the bill. You can’t be a responsible individual and drink and drive…you can’t just eat whatever you want and then wonder why you have diabetes later on in life and you can’t NOT VOTE and then complain when a new law comes down taking away your right to own a fire arm or complain because you don’t like how things are handled. Personal responsibility is ACTIVE not passive. Personal responsibility is not just about you but in seeing the big picture and how your actions will have an impact upon others and then making a decision that will harm the fewest people and places and is in the best interest of all concerned without prejudice. (And yes, we do have that responsibility to have the wisdom to see how our actions may or may not support others that is part of being a grown, mature adult, its about not just thinking of ourselves). And collectively we should be responsible too…however, that is not the point of this blog article, the point is that the chickens are coming home to roost…for too long, too many have abdicated their personal responsibility, placing their trust, like a child, into people with whom they also placed their futures and now face reality or not. For those of us who are personally responsible for ourselves we prepare for life on life’s terms, we do not hand over our lives to strangers who may or may not have our best interests at heart, whom, for whatever reasons, may have agendas that suit their own sense of ‘personal responsibility’ but that may not match our own. When we recognize we may have made a mistake, we don’t run from it nor expect someone else to clean up our mess…we get into it, make amends and do what we can to remedy the situation and then get up and go forth, hopefully never to repeat the problem again. We, as personally responsible people seek not to force our opinions upon others, but make our opinions heard and then allows others to form their own opinions, whether we agree with them or not and keep on going. We support ourselves, don’t expect help but ask for it when we truly need it…we do what we can, when we can to minimize the help we need, but we are not infallible fortresses, one-man armies nor an island. We can see when others need our help or opinions or perhaps some sound advice and give it, not to engender them to ourselves but give them a hand up so that they too, may become personally responsible. And we are personally responsible in that we do no grievous harm to others or at the expense of others merely to promote our own well-being or that of our group. At the heart of someone who prepares for life and whatever may come, ie a prepper, is someone who sees and understands the wisdom of personal responsibility and then does something about it. Is personal responsibility so ‘out of date’ that it has become radical and thus something to be feared? Or has it been out of fashion for so long that to be personally responsible for ourselves, our family, our friends and our country and our world is something that we have lost the ability to be so? I think not, for to be personally responsible is a minute to minute, day to day choice and that is why growing numbers are becoming ‘preppers’ or being more prepared. Personal responsible gives one personal power and alleviates fear and calms the stressors in one’s life, is that something to be feared or mocked or marginalized…no, and I am proud to see more and more people in this world, for whatever their reason, becoming more responsible for themselves and their loved ones and becoming prepared to face what life will throw at them in the coming years. It need not be scary nor something that only radicals do, for truly, its all about personal responsibility.

And it begins with me…

Asking…what if?

Then I start to answer those what if questions and do my best not to assume that a parental hand will come along and pat me on the back or tell me…it will be okay…for I am my own parental hand and it is my personal responsibilty to take care of myself, voice my opinions, think not just of myself but of others too and then do what I need to do to be that hand for myself. It may include saving money for a rainy day, it may include getting extra food into the house. It may include educating myself on the ways of handling minor medical problems and having the tools on hand to do so (not to mention getting the wisdom to know when I can’t do it myself). It may include thinking ahead and planning for those those times that others can’t behave themselves and it most definately means that I act not as a child would in response to external events.

It is my sincere wish that anyone who has read this has a light bulb turned on within their own heart and mind and it is my prayer today that maybe, just maybe, that I have helped someone turn the page and begin to realize that they need to be more personally responsible, not just because its the wise thing to do and it will ‘save themselves’ but because it is the right thing to do in all of our interests and perhaps, just maybe, this will, in the end, save someone’s life and help all of move peacably past the turmoil in our world now.

And I really have to ask…what would the world be like if most people were personally responsible?

This is a ‘come over’ from my survivalmedicineblog.com site- sorry for the repeat facebook fans 🙂 but I thought it would bear a reappearance on this one too!

Many preppers and survivalists focus on the beans and bullets aspect of being prepared. They often just say ‘get a good first aid kit’ and call it good. Some go so far as to say get medical equipment and stockpile antibiotics, there are many ideas about what a ‘good’ kit is and list upon lists of what you will need in the event you are ‘forced’ to go it alone in taking care of your own healthcare needs…and then their is the camp that goes so far as to get the training or finds doctors and nurses to include in their ‘group’ But let’s face it, the fact is this: most of us wouldn’t know what the heck to do with most modern medical supplies or medicine or how to propperly use anything beyond a basic bandaid…even if we could our hands on more than the basic band aid and topical cream. Training can be expensive and/or inconvient and hard to come by and sometimes, doing things we have no idea about is more dangerous than doing nothing at all. And most doctors and nurses I know (including my own family) are not preparedness fans let alone self-help types, they rely upon the system and just can’t grasp the idea that being prepared beyond 3-7 days is something worth while. Yes, there are professionals out there who ‘believe’ but again, let’s face it, most don’t.

I am all for having a good first aid kit and modern medical supplies that I am comfortable using, I am also a big one on avoiding doctors and modern medical intervention whenever possible (and my family is FULL of doctors and nurses!)  A lot of my attitude, admittedly, comes from years of not having medical insurance and not exactly being made of money. I was ‘forced’ into finding alternatives in caring for my health needs and just how much I can indeed handle myself.  Over the years, I have become pretty well versed on caring for myself, family and friends and have found that alternatives such as herbalism, homeopathy and essential oils can, when used correctly be just as effective if not more so than modern medicine. I fully recognize that there are limitations to these alternatives and when necessary seek out modern medical intervention, but I have also come to recognize that many of our most basic healthcare needs can be met at home and through the use of alternatives.

There are basic ‘rules of the road’ to taking care of yourself and family that are actually easy to follow if you dare to try it. It’s a mind set mostly, and I hope that you something useful from them that will help you get ready for whatever may come-

Simple rules of the road for taking control of your health needs:

Sanitation/Hygiene– this should be a no-brainer but many infections are spread through bad hygiene habits. Keep your hands clean (either the hand sanitizers or good hand washing with soap and water…and if all else fails, use a baby wipe!) Keep all food handling and prep areas clean. If someone is sick, keep them isolated. I can’t tell you how many times my kids have come home from school sick or I have gotten sick because someone came to school or work sick when they should have stayed home. Make sure you are as clean as possible with your own body and if you get a cut or scrape…clean it asap! Same goes for bites and other wounds…simple, through cleaning of wounds, bites, hands and surfaces goes a long, long way to preventing infections and make sure after helping someone who does have an infection that you wash your hand BEFORE AND AFTER helping them…and by the way…keep your hand out of your mouth, nose and eyes. And for goodness sakes, after using the bathroom or changing a diaper or cleaning up vomit, clean up! Basic stuff folks, but extremely important to prevent infections and disease and in a situation where you are mostly or completely on your own, this ‘simple’ mindset/action could be a life saver.

Be Vigilant and Pay Attention– this is another no-brainer, but I know that many of us get so caught up in what is going on around us that we simply don’t pay attention to our bodies or our children’s behavior (most children will not ‘complain’ or the complaint is very vague). Pay attention to how you feel physically…if you feel warm (without a good reason) or there is pain somewhere, take the time to check it out. If your children are whiny for no reason take the time to find out why. If you child is listless or flushed, take the time to figure out why. If you are tired for no ‘reason’ take the time to figure out why. If there is a little red around a wound or any heat around an area, take the time to take care of it. My point is this, in many instances the body lets you know one way or the other that something is up and the sooner you pay attention to your body and what it is trying to tell you, the better off you will be and the sooner you can do something about it. Time is of the Essence- this goes hand in hand with being vigilant and paying attention…the faster you start doing something about the issue, the less likely it will turn into a life threatening situation. This also goes to preventing things from happening…don’t put off doing what you need to do toady in order to help yourself, from taking care of that cut to fixing that fence or filling up the gas tank…be prepared! Don’t let it go ‘until’, in a SHTF situation, letting it ‘go’ might get you dead…help could be forever in coming, far away or non-existent, so get on it immediately. And one last thing on this subject of being vigilant and paying attention- keep your eye on what is going on around you health wise…lots of coughing? fevers? there might be a time that you being watchful and mindful of your ‘health’ surroundings could save your life (think pandemic) or at the very least, keep you from getting sick yourself.

Have the Knowledge and Experience Beforehand to Help Yourself– it does no good if you stock up on supplies, medicines, herbals, homeopathics and books if you don’t know how to use them, aren’t comfortable using them and don’t know where to find the information in those books that you have spent so much money on when you need it…take the time now to try simple remedies and simple self-medicating/self-help techniques so that you are familiar with them and comfortable in handling a non-emergency situation on your own. After all, if it doesn’t work, you still have plan B…intervention of your doctor (at least for now).  Trying to learn and practice self-help under stressful situations is a disaster waiting to happen. Do it NOW so that you feel confident and sure of yourself…but also note this… Its all well and good to think, ‘well, if the SHTF I will just grow my own medicine’ or ‘I have the book on that! I will be okay!’…many herbal plants need to be grown for several years before they can used. Did you know the best time to harvest? To plant? How to identify them in the wild? Dosage? How to actually use them? Tinctures take 6 weeks or more to make and teas are used for one thing, decoctions for another and tinctures…well, they can be used in a million and one ways…also, will you even try to make your own? Or stock up on pre-made remedies and plants? homeopathic remedies can actually produce symptoms (called a proving) if they are not the correct remedy and some essential oils (just like herbs) can interact with pharmaceuticals, and some essential oils are caustic when used undiluted on the skin or membranes and some oils are best used without dilution…do you know what to do in case an oil gets in your eye or someplace else it doesn’t belong? How to store the herbs, homeopathics and oils? see, you need the knowledge, practice and experience now, before you really need it, so that in a bad situation you are ready to take care of yourself without undue stress. Doctors and nurses trained for years, why not you? Self-care is learned through practice, practice, practice and not just reading about it once.

Be Persistent and Committed! I will be the first to admit that much of the self-help outside of modern medicine is tedious and time consuming and it is definitely not like having to remember to pop a pill once a day and it may not necessary repress symptoms while it is solving the issue at hand. It takes time, effort and a commitment to helping yourself get better without outside intervention in order to make it ‘work’. Often, self-reliance in taking care of your own healthcare matters means doing more than ‘taking’ something. It takes a willingness to take care of yourself and that may mean not doing it all, nor expecting a miracle to happen over night. It may mean that you have to stop what you are doing that seems so important at that moment and doing several things in order to stop a problem before it becomes a problem. Even modern docs now recognize that lifestyle changes, eating habits and exercise patterns are better at preventing many health problems than taking a pill and that just ‘taking’ something often doesn’t ‘cure’ the problem. Be patient, follow instructions to the T, including how much (more is definitely NOT better) and how often to do or take something. Just like most modern medicines that we use today, if not taken correctly it can either harm or not help at all…both of which are not good. Commitment yourself to being self-reliant, learning and being persistent and you will be in good shape for what may come.

Do Not Get Overwhelmed– for many who were raised to be dependant upon the system for their every need in their well-being, it can be scary to break away and become more self-reliant in taking care of their own needs. It can be a daunting task when you first begin to investigate or even begin to take care of yourself and healthcare needs. But by taking it one-step at a time, one thing at a time, one need at a time, and making ‘easy does it’ a part of your mindset you will soon be amazed at just how much you can be in control of your healthcare needs.

Just like most other aspects of being prepared and prepped, you don’t have to do it all at one time and remember, you are not alone…ask for help and make friends who know more than you about it and just do it, make it apart of your preparedness lifestyle and in the end, even if it doesn’t hit the fan and the world suddenly does an about face and everything comes up roses, you will be better for taking control of your own health and well-being.

And lastly, recognize that sometimes you won’t be able to take care of yourself and you might need to ask for help.

PS…if you have a life threatening illness already, by all means necessary, try to stock up on your medication and supplies that you need to take care of yourself…sometimes there is a need for modern medicine…but I also encourage you to do a bit of research and see what else might help you to reduce your dependence upon modern meds. NEVER ever stop taking your medication and switch over to an alternative without the help of your doctor…I love my alternatives but am wise enough to know their limitations.

God bless

With life (at least to me) feeling like quicksand at the moment where anything can happen (think Murphy’s Law) at any given moment I have to come to believe that there are indeed a few things that I can do to prepare against shtf and having it on me. And trust me, like you, I FEEL it everyday. Just going to the grocery store or filling up the gas tank keeps me aware that the SHTF is coming on now, it just hasn’t snowballed to critical yet (thank goodness!) at least for me.

I don’t believe that it can be posted enough that being prepared for whatever may come is best practice so here is my own short list in order of importance of getting down to business to being prepared:

1) Store Food- yes, this is at the top of my list, everyday I do something to either get prepared to store food, actually store food or something dealing with storing food (gardening, containers, dehydrating, purchasing, planning) now, the ‘feds’ used to say enough for 3 days for each person in the family. They have recently revised this up to 7 days, but recently, the head of NASA told his people to be ready to take care of themselves for at least 3 months…hmmm…think I will continue to work on at least 1 year. And don’t forget Fiddo and Kitty. Under this also falls water.

2) Work at Increasing my Earning Capacity- now, I realize that some of you won’t be so fortunate as to be able to do this with grace and ease. Since I work for myself and work from home (which by the way is the BEST way to prepare for after SHFT funding of your home and family) I control what I do and when I do it. For me, increasing my earning capacity means giving great customer service (within boundaries) and consistantly adding new things to inventory, reworking what I do and how I do it (increase efficiency) and working on new ideas for my own businesses. For those of you who are tied to a paycheck, increasing your earning capacity can be done in many different ways, just be careful in doing so if it also means increasing your level of debt. Flexibilty and not having all your financial eggs in one basket is key…

3) Gather Essential Items – well, a ton of information has been written about this and covers such things as tolietries, items of interest and need (think anything and everything that you use even occassionally). For me sometimes, it’s a daily adventure in just recognizing what it is that I use daily…like those white scrubby things that take the place of cleaners that have a million and one uses for cleaning around the house. Put that on my list of ‘need’ to get.  Sometimes gathering essential items doesn’t just mean buying something that day, but as I said above, just figuring out what I use and would need to survive if it hits.

4) Learn Something New Everyday- each day I spend anywhere from 10mins to going down the proverbial rabbit hole in learning something new. It is a commitment I made (made much easier to the internet thank you!) to myself…knowledge is power people and practical knowledge is even better.

5) Pay Off Debt- oh yes, that dreaded D-word, I am not, as most people aren’t, immune to debt…I have a small amount of credit card debt (2 almost paid off and as soon as they are they will be cancelled), student loans (again, a fairly small amount), one car payment and my mortgage. Some days working towards paying off debt is simply not wasting food, other days its paying more than the minimum due…but I am conscious everyday what I owe to creditors and work each day to getting rid of it somehow.

6) Help Others- now, this may seem strange to be put on the list of getting ready for worst case SHTF, but for me, its important…it keeps me grateful for what I have (or don’t have), keeps me grounded in reality and most days allows me to feel good about life in general. Nothing like knowing that you helped someone (even its opening and holding the door or just listening) have a better day themselves to give your own life a better glow to it. When we help others we are helping ourselves, getting outside of our head space (which can be a scary place) and into the world. An attitude of gratitude, sharing and caring can be developed which is paramount in surviving whatever may come…the lone wolf dies by himself. And you know, it just feels good to help out when and where you can. Let it begin at home folks and then take it out to the world.

So, that is my “Down to Business” List for everyday living. It helps to keep me focused and not living in fear (which is paralyzing btw). It gives me structure and guidelines (which is comforting when it gets crazy in my home) and keeps me action oriented. For you, the ‘list’ might be a bit different or the details different, but maybe my list will give you something to think about and get you going on your way to being prepared.