Disaster Preparedness - Principles of Self-Sufficiency
By Don McAlvany
1. Change the way you look at everything. Rethink your entire lifestyle.
2. Develop discernment about people.
3. When you invest, invest first in the right people.
4. Honesty, look at yourself, your strengths and your weaknesses.
5. Seek the counsel of others you trust.
6. Find like-minded people who can be part of a mutual support group and who you can cooperate with.
7. Find alternate methods for doing everything.
8. Develop an instinct for what doesn't feel right. No matter how good something looks or sounds on the surface, go with your gut feeling, with your instinct, with your intuition.
9. Eliminate non-essentials from your life. Eliminate all time wasters and money wasters, and things you don't need -i.e. clothes, furniture, junk, etc. Eliminate television from your life.
10. Simplify your lifestyle - learn to say 'no' to things or activities which do not make you self-sufficient. Learn to place
God and yourself, and not other people.
11. Develop physical, mental and spiritual disciplines.
12. Learn to treat everything as if it were irreplaceable.
13. Buy things that will last, even if they cost more.
14. Acquire tools that do not depend upon electric power.
15. Learn to spend time alone with yourself in total silence - think, reflect, reminisce, and plan [or strategize] in silence.
16. Learn to spend time alone with yourself and your family, apart from superficial entertainment and distractions.
17. Learn something from every situation you are in everything you hear, see, touch, or feel has a lesson in it. Learn a principle from every mistake you make, from everyday life situations.
18. Make sure your trust is in the Lord and not your own preparedness. Pattern your preparedness according to the guidance of the Lord. Listen to what the Lord puts in your heart - don't use only your
19. Learn to enjoy simple pleasures from the smallest things - have measure of joy and happiness that doesn't come from creature comforts or entertainment.
20. Store up memories for times of isolation or separation from your loved ones.
21. Establish priorities for all of life [i.e. relationship, needs, present needs, future needs.] Set goals for areas you'll be proficient or self-sufficient in. Set a schedule or time line based on money and time you can invest in self-sufficiency.
22. Examine the concept of civil disobedience [from the Bible and history.] At what point should the people of Egypt have said 'no' to killing the male babies in Moses' day? At what point should the
people of colonial America have said 'no' to King George? At what point should the people of Germany have said 'no' to Hitler? At what point do we say 'no' to despots in our day - when they take
over money, our property, our guns, our children, our freedom? Decide what is your choke point - when do you move to civil disobedience? [For many throughout history - it was when evil
leaders handed down edicts that were directly contrary o God's Word or commands.] Don't set your choke point too early or too quickly, nor too late, nor never. Think through or calculate a
strategy - then never look back.
23. Learn to ask the right questions in every situation. [In 'Operation Waco,' nobody asked the right questions.]
24. Bring orderliness into your life. If you live in disorder it will pull you down, it will break your focus. Think focus versus distraction. Eliminate the distractions from your life.
25. Self-sufficiency [or survival] principles are learned on a day-to-day basis and must be practical.
26. Always have more than one way to escape, more than one way to do something. Have a plan B and a plan C.
27. Everyday life [and especially crisis] requires 'up-front systems' and 'back-up systems' if the first line of defense or 'up-front systems fails.
28. Real education [or learning] only takes place when change occurs in our attitudes, actions, and way of life.
29. Wisdom is making practical applications of what you know. It is not enough to know everything you need to know. It will only serve you and others if practical application is made of that knowledge.
30. Fix in your own mind the truth about your capabilities. In a crisis situation this principle will keep you from cockiness [or overconfidence] and will provide you with confidence.
31. Decide ahead of time before a crisis arrives, how you will react in a given situation so that you are not swayed by the circumstances, the situation, or your emotions.
32. Beware of being spread too thin in your life. Decide on the few things in life that you must do and do them well. Think focus versus distraction. Make sure that unimportant, non-essential distractions don't keep you from achieving your important objectives.
33. Learn to quit wasting things. Be a good steward of all that God provides.
34. Buy an extra one of everything you use regularly and set the extra one aside for the time when such items may be difficult or impossible to obtain.
35. In every situation, train yourself to look for what doesn't fit, for what's out of place, for what doesn't look right.
36. Teach your children [and yourself] that they are not obligated to give information to a stranger. You don't have to answer questions [not even to a government official] that are none of their business.
37. Sell or give away things you do not use or need. Consider giving away or selling 50% of your 'stuff,' [i.e. the non-essentials.] Simplify and streamline your life, lifestyle and possessions.
38. Find someone who lived through the Great Depression and learn from them how they were self-sufficient, how they made do with little, and how they found joy and contentment in the midst of hard times. An excellent book on this subject is We Had Everything But Money: Priceless Memories of the Great Depression.
- Don McAlvany, Editor, The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor