Even though I have a blog and always share my honest thoughts with you about prepping, I wanted to show that I am a real person too. Unlike many of the preparedness gurus online, I don’t have (or know) the answers to many questions and, as a result, do dumb things on my path to being better prepared. In fact, if there’s a test that relates “being human” to making mistakes while prepping, I may have aced the test!
That said, I keep trying new things and learning from what I did wrong. I’ve come to the distinct conclusion that it’s OK to make mistakes so long as I keep trying to do better and, more importantly, learn from what I did wrong.
So, off the top of my head, here’s a few of things I’ve done–or didn’t do as the case may be–that I could have done better or sooner had I the foresight or knowledge to do them:
- I’ve failed to rotate food that I’ve kept in vehicle kits for years (I’m sure some of it went bad from heat exposure but I didn’t want to check)
- I’ve removed the texting capabilities from my cell phone because I was tired of getting texts solicitations that I had to pay to receive (this definitely limits my communication capabilities with family)
- I’ve stored wheat and other dry bulk goods for years without having a clue how to use them (honestly, who hasn’t done this?)
- I’ve removed documentation from our bug out bags with the intention of updating their contents but didn’t do so for months
- I’ve left candles uncovered in my vehicle kits that literally melted on other supplies (what a mess!)
- I’ve purchased plenty of useless products that said “survival” or “emergency” on their labels only to find out they’re worthless
- I’ve purchased MREs for our bug out bags without knowing how to use them
- I’ve tried to use my Steripen with the protective cap on (yes, it was just a test and, no, I did not bother to read the directions first… I am a guy!)
- I wish I had taken more first aid and medical courses (I guess I still can)
- I’ve ignored security and defense of my home and family for a variety of reasons for years (and still do to some extent)
- I’ve removed my vehicle kits in order to allow space for luggage when we go on long trips (but at least I did keep vehicle-specific gear)
- I’ve assumed my kids are mini versions of me and didn’t bother to take their specific considerations in mind
- I still don’t keep my mouth shut about preparedness (both online and in person… well, I don’t reveal EVERYTHING I do)
- I’ve assumed I could “go it alone” with my family (the reality is that it takes a group or community to survive)
- I should have spent more of my money initially on the basic human needs (water and food) rather than on more expensive gear that’s nice to have but far less necessary than food and water!
- I’ve bought commando saws and mylar blankets… enough said
- I’ve underestimated the amount of medical supplies (e.g., gauze pads, pills) that can be needed to treat a serious medical problem, let alone for a real SHTF situation
- I’ve failed to store extra propane for emergency use
- I’ve let my gasoline stores run completely out (as well as our vehicle’s gas tanks – still can’t get my wife to fill up at 1/2 tank)
- I didn’t get into gardening until recently (still too much to learn!!!)
- I still haven’t purchased a good amount of survival seeds for later use
And that’s just off the top of my head. I could probably double that list if I really thought about it. If you’ve made similar mistakes, that’s OK. Just keep trying, learning, and doing and you’ll never regret your actions.