Some critical needs to survive

This post is going to be about a few things I think might become critical needs to survive and thrive, as the green-energy transformation (collapse of the world economic systems as we know them) speeds up. My list isn’t your usual list of food, water, and ability to defend yourself, your family and your home. There are literally dozens upon dozens of online sources and books on emergency preparedness, survival, gardening, and farming available that can provide better information on those topics than I can. The things I’m going to talk about again, don’t cost anything, except working hard to develop critical-thinking skills.

Information

Reliable and actionable information is vital to help us make decisions and respond, especially in a crisis. The first thing I’m going to mention again is learning to critically analyze information. According to polling and viewership stats on public trust in news media, across the board, trust in news media is at an all-time low.

Yet, just as people say they don’t trust certain news media, most people still get news from various news sources and this holds true across the political spectrum.

For instance, many Trump-supporters completely distrust mainstream (liberal) media and they’ll rush to distrust FOX News or any right-leaning news source, if that news source reports anything negative about Trump. Often, Trump will tout some new right-wing news media source and many of his supporters will gravitate there. Some people on the right get their news only from certain right-wing online sources or pundits, whom they trust.

On the left, this same phenomenon plays out with choosing news sources too. Recently, CNN’s new management fired some big name people, who were rabidly and openly anti-Trump. One of those people was a hard news reporter, who tweeted hate-filled anti-Trump diatribes for several years. Many liberals are outraged at CNN for firing these very biased CNN personalities. People on the left, who hate Trump, likewise gravitate to only left-wing online sources and the more they hate Trump, the further left they move in their news source choices.

If you gather your news only from sources that align with your partisan politics and trust them completely, that’s called confirmation bias. In a rapidly changing environment, relying only on information that feeds your own prior beliefs and values can leave you very ill-informed and it can lead you to make important decisions based on inaccurate or totally false information. It can also leave you blind to a whole lot of other events and information that could better inform you about what’s happening.

If you place your trust in personalities, by trusting only certain pundits or online influencers and make decisions based on their advice, it could easily lead to some disastrous decisions in a crisis. Many pundits and online influencers engage in a whole lot of confirmation bias too, but they also make money hyping stories, that are speeding down the internet superhighways, to attract an audience. Drama attracts viewers and keeps them coming back for more.

In the old days many people relied on a trusted family friend or someone locally, when making major financial decisions, but millions of people now trust online influencers or popular pundits over people in their own lives. In a crisis, local events happening can be way more critical and important in your daily life and how well you survive and thrive, than listening to news sources, who have no idea exactly what’s happening where you live. It’s important to figure out some local news sources and try to build some local community.

Developing a wider circle of information-gathering might be useful too. I think it’s wiser to gather information from across the political spectrum, compare it and also work to develop local sources. I also try to completely read through news articles, rather than react to headlines, because often important information is buried deep in news articles. Often, I jot down notes of things I want to look into a bit more.

Survival is local

Local news can be harder to find these days, since local newspapers are a dying entity, but even talking to neighbors, the guy at the gas station or people at local businesses might be more useful than news sources from across the country or across the world. When I was growing up in rural PA, the local diner was the information hub and my father liked to stop by there almost daily to hear about what was going on.

Finding reliable local information will be more valuable than knowing about some global shortages and all the global events playing out. Finding the supplies and things we need to survive closer to home in a global financial crisis will be critical. We’ll all likely have to shorten our own family’s supply chain a great deal in a global economic crisis, as big corporation supply chains we rely on sputter and falter.

Knowing about events that are happening closer to home matters immensely with personal and home security decisions. For instance, if major civil unrest breaks out in some urban areas, but things in your area are calm and safe, then reacting as if it’s unsafe to go out in public where you live or deciding it’s time to hunker down would not be an informed decision. It would be overreacting to media hype and a failure to gather reliable and actionable information for your location. Remaining as resilient and able to move about freely, rather than rushing to hunker down, makes more sense than self-limiting your personal liberty based on fear and lack of reliable local information. I suspect with the pandemic craziness there will be some people, who voluntarily live hunkered down, out of fear, for years to come.

Know Thyself

In life you’ll encounter many types of people and it’s much easier accurately assessing other people’s personality, character flaws and behavior than it is our own. The road to self-awareness is hard and most people, avoid being completely honest about their own short-comings, failures and mistakes.

It’s a continual work in progress to face up to your own mistakes and flaws. It’s even harder to work to change them. And it’s much easier to assess blame on other people and events rather than face the truth. Learning to face the truth is hard.

Most of us like to be right and we like to be vindicated when other people challenge our views or criticize us. A lot of people will do a circle the wagon approach, trying to find a group that uncritically supports their views and they in turn will do the same thing for them. In the online world, just like the real world, there are cliques (communities), where no disagreements or criticisms are tolerated and even saying you disagree with anything is deemed “trolling.” Often others will rush to condemn the “trolls,” but when I read comment sections it’s like all or nothing – any comment that isn’t 100% in lockstep is labelled trolling and there’s a circle the wagon attitude.

Surrounding yourself with only people who agree with you completely can lead to a failure to honestly assess yourself, your ideas, your plans. It’s fine to find like-minded people to try to work together on things that matter to you. Even I would look for someone interested in needlework to form a sewing circle, but insulating yourself from other ideas and views can lead to stagnation in your thinking. It can also make you weak and unable to adapt to chaotic times. Being open to new ideas and being willing to admit you were wrong are two important survival habits to develop.

A couple years ago I made a statement to my youngest daughter that I am a very flexible person. She told me there are lots of words she’d use to describe me, but “flexible” isn’t one of them. She was being totally honest and once I thought about it, I knew she was right.

I am very set in my ways, very hard-headed about “following the rules,” have very strong opinions on right and wrong and often I cling to ways and things whose time has passed. I am still clinging to my landline phone, still clinging to my older TVs, that aren’t smart TVs and therefore using cable. I am thinking about buying a newer TV and ditching cable, but I’m still very attached to my landline phone. I do have a cell phone, but hate using it. I prefer to use a hand grater rather than my electric food processor and the list goes on. I’m like this about many things – I don’t want to adapt rapidly and in truth, I’m definitely not very flexible. Being flexible can be a very good trait in rapidly changing times. And, yes, I know I can be too judgmental too, as my family tells me regularly, especially when I reject completely the latest liberal culture war crap they tell me about (ok, I believe rejecting that is a good thing – that’s where I stand and I won’t change).

Avoid the drama

Finding some calm and inner-peace, even in bad times will help you weather the worst storms. My late husband had this totally irreverent sense of dark humor that would end up making me laugh, even in really bad times. A lot of soldiers are like that and that ability to find ways to relieve stress helps people through the hard times.

Social media and news media overflow with drama, distractions and endless rabbit holes to grab our attention and never let go. Finding ways to limit our news consumption and social media consumption can be hard, but working on breaking free of the drama and distraction will give us more time to think about other more important things. I struggle with this too, because of my being a news junkie. And unless you want to live like Alice in Wonderland, it’s best to avoid rabbit holes, especially the most alarmist, the-sky-is-falling ones.

The media is also full of soap opera news that can waste your time and energy. I didn’t watch even one minute of the Johnny Depp/Amber Heard trial and what I did learn was from my adult kids wanting to tell me about it. I told them I don’t care about it at all and I still don’t care.

Right now the news media is in a Royal Frenzy. I admired Queen Elizabeth II in many ways, but I’m not into monarchy. I wrote two blog post on King Charles III, because he’s relevant in relation to the great reset events and I wanted to be clear that despite the media gushing about him, his history is that of being closely connected with Klaus Schwab and a committed green-agenda zealot, in my opinion. I don’t care about the minute-by-minute royal reporting and I don’t care one iota about Harry and Meghan or William and Kate or any of the other royals. I do admire Kate’s fashion sense though.

We’ve had a lot of rain where I live and I’m more concerned about paying attention to the weather right now than caring about what’s going on with the royals.

If I want to escape, I’m planning to get back to my crafting and needlework, plus I have piles of books I want to read.

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Filed under Emergency Preparedness, General Interest

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