Sunday, March 25, 2012

NOT Nurturing Paranoia


                Most of the people within the "Preparedness Movement" both within the United States and internationally, are reasonable intelligent people.  They seek simply to plan ahead sufficiently to allow their families to survive a natural event, or a man-made event that would have challenged their survival, and their family's comfort, had they not prepared.  This is as simple as it is.   Of course, what is reasonable in terms of preparation in Texas, would be considered over-the-top in Stockholm, simply because the threat level and hazards differ considerably.  We need to accept this and avoid a number of things.   First of all, we need to refrain from judging the preparations of others whenever we can.  Stocking the amount of water my Colorado friends do, would be irrational, here where I just received five inches of rain, and collected quite a bit.   My stocking a 50 cal weapon as my rural Texas border friends do, would be irrational here.  Comparing is only useful as it helps us to consider whether we have met our own local challenges optimally.
                Our most important tasks in the preparedness community is to prepare for emergencies for ourselves and for our families.  Our second task should be to share our thinking on how we prepare, not in a judgemental or bossy way, but in an informative way.  We need to understand how very different our lives and our regions are, US state to US state.   Certainly, there are even more striking difference in risk and risk management with regard to preparedness, nation to nation.   It's one important task


                I suppose if one reads a large amount concerning preparedness and survivalism, it becomes easier to be fearful.  However, we are sent to Earth to do the best that we can with the information and the materials we are given.  We need to take care of the tasks at hand, even when they may be overwhelming, and then we need to find a way to let them go.  I have a saying I heard many years ago, which I try to make a part of my life.  "I do the best I can each day, and then I sleep well, because God is going to be up all night anyway.".   The truth is, that once we do our best, there is very little in life which truly warrants losing much sleep.  So, learn what you can.  Take care of your family.  Live and love.  It takes just as much time and effort to be kind and decent to people than it does to give them a hard time, so bring light whenever you can.   Hold people accountable when you must.   Try to live a life in balance, and try to see preparedness as a balanced approach to life.
                If you linger in preparedness and survivalism long enough, you will encounter some paranoid people.  Some of these people are paranoid because they had difficult early lives. They know how difficult life can be, and they expect adulthood and the future to be as difficult or worse.  Others are a shade paranoid because their lives as soldiers, spies or police officers etc. led them to being hypervigilant as a requirement of their jobs.  This can be very hard to shake even afterward.   Some people are paranoid with regard to preparedness and survivalism because they have been bombarded by media and have arrived at a place where they don't believe that the authorities or politicians are doing their jobs any longer.  There are a few positive things to paranoia.   One is that the paranoid are rarely murdered or abducted.  They notice much, and they tend to protect their children well.  However, they clearly do not enjoy their lives.  So, if you have come to survivalism or preparedness with an insatiable desire to learn all you can, then so be it.  But, remember, to live a life in balance, and remember to enjoy the journey also.  Strive for watchfulness without hypervigilance, oraganization without obsessive compulsion, concern without obsession, preparedness without exhaustion.  Be reasonably skeptical, but trust when appropriate.  Yes, I know that this is a tall order, but I know that you are bright and balanced people overall.