Chapter 4 – Beyond the Basics

Seven Steps for Survival Success

Everyone’s survival situation is different, so use these steps as a suggestion and modify them to fit your specific needs. The key is to never stop preparing. Start small and build until you consider preparedness and survival whenever you make your major decisions. Captain Dave’s Survival Guide is intended as a map to guide you in this journey. Not surprisingly, the steps below follow the guide:

Step 1: Identify the most severe threats likely to affect you, so that you can prepare for them first. (This is spelled out in Chapter One.) Think of it as knowing your enemy.

Step 2: Make evacuation plans and prepare a bugout kit for yourself and each member of your family. Not coincidentally, this is covered in Chapter Two of Captain Dave’s Survival Guide.

Step 3: Prepare a permanent survival kit for your car. This will serve you well if you need to bug out or if you are caught away from your home. There’s an example of an automotive kit in Chapter Three under shelter.

Step 4: Start building your food and water stash at home. (Food storage is discussed in depth in both the food storage FAQ and in the food section of this guide. Techniques for saving money while buying food are covered below).

Step 5: Start acquiring survival tools. These could be anything from a plastic wrench to turn off the gas to a chainsaw. A list of tools is provided as a resource for you.

Step 6: Start expanding your knowledge base through reading and taking courses. Build a survival library. You should review our list of survival links for online resources and visit Captain Dave’s Book Shelf for some good reading.

Step 7: When you make large purchases, such as your car and home, consider its application for survival and preparedness reasons. This means avoid hurricane prone areas and flood zones and stay well away from the fault line.

Additional Steps

You should be adding to your survival skills or supplies every week or at least every month. Sound hard? It doesn’t have to be. It could be as simple as adding a few purchases during your weekly shopping trip. Or it could mean picking up a new magazine at the newsstand. Or you could rent a video or buying a book or on a survival-related subject.  (We love the library, but during an emergency, you want your reference books with you, not on someone else’s shelf.)

Your best weapon is your mind, and reading and practicing will help polish and improve your survival skills. Some skills, such as first aid and identifying and gathering foods in the wild, are obviously and directly survival-related. Others, such as learning to weld or to repair small engines, may be more of a stretch. But who’s to say that your future survival situation might not require someone who can weld a water-storage tank or repair a generator?  The more you can do to improve your personal preparedness, knowledge and experience, the better.

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