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New here – what articles are your favorites?

I’m a new member, I love all the content and commentary… So much good information…wow!  That said, can some fellow members please share favorite/important pages to read first? Thank you! 

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  • Comments (7)

    • 5

      I just happened to be looking at this piece about whether or not milk helps neutralize tear gas and pepper spray. I love it as an example of quickly debunking myths/folklore to make easy, actionable learnings. 

      • 2

        Thank you!

    • 7

      Two articles that changed how I build my bug out bag are:

      1. Why you should use a priority bag system and ignore BOB vs. INCH – This taught me to not try to put everything and the kitchen sink in my bug out bag, but instead have the core basics for survival in my main pack, and have additional bags/totes that have optional luxuries that would be nice to bring.
      2. Bug in vs. bug out: Why your home is always the default choice – This article grounded me in reality that my home is my main base, all my supplies are here, and it’s safe and place I have a right to shelter in, where as many other prepper sites put higher priority on the glam of bugging out at any sign of disaster, roughing it in the woods, and hunting for your food. I’d rather stay where I’m familiar with and avoid a lot of the stress of evacuating unless it is truly necessary.

      Lots of good stuff on this site that I am still picking my way through, but those are two that really stood out for me with more rational approaches that I haven’t seen anywhere else. I’d love to hear some of the articles that you enjoy as you sift through the site, you know… like once you watch Star Wars you can never truly forget it and watch it again like it’s your first time, you always know that Darth Vader is Luke’s father. So help me live out experiencing this site for the first time again, maybe I’ll pick up on something from new eyes.

      • 3

        Thank you, that’s funny about Star Wars! At the moment I’m absorbing more content here and feeling slightly foolish for some (OK, many) purchases I’ve made before I came across TP.com. The product reviews here are great, and now I’m re spending $$ on actual product that will work when I need it.

    • 6

      Welcome to the forum! My favorite article, and might be yours too if you are a gardener or inspiring gardener is Best foods to grow in a survival garden. Planning out a garden is almost as much fun as harvest time is. Every spring I dream about what good crops I want in the coming year and just enjoy the process.

    • 7

      This article introduced me to “Fire in Paradise”, two documentaries (Netflix and Frontline) on the wildfire that wiped out the town of Paradise, California.

      https://theprepared.com/blog/netflixs-fire-in-paradise/

      These documentaries illuminated several aspects of emergency preparedness for me:

      1. I may need to evacuate with little to no warning.
      2. My first warning might be from looking out the window.
      3. Emergency responders may not know any more about the situation than I could learn by looking out the window.
      4. Even if emergency responders try to alert me, and even if I signed up for those alerts, the rarely tested alert system may fail to alert me.
      5. A car evacuation could suddenly turn into a running evacuation due to congestion.
      6. A running evacuation could suddenly turn into sheltering in place at some random place as escape routes are cut off.
    • 5

      Welcome Sturious!  Well, there’s the Checklist for beginners.  That’s always a good one.  I also really liked the threat modeling thread.  It helps prioritize what to focus on early.

    • 6

      Hello and welcome! I hope you love it here.

      Building a list of favourites is a great topic.

      If you are just starting:

      • The intro guide is excellent. I send this link to people all the time. It not only has a concrete list of actual steps to take, but also helps to introduce the mindset of wanting to be more prepared.
      • Next, think about starting to build a pantry. “Store what you eat, and eat what you store”. This may be the cheapest way to get started, if you can simply pick up an extra item or two each time you shop for food.
      • Exercise is something most people will be able to do, and can be free. If you do nothing else but have a Go bag, build a pantry, and stay in physical shape, you are doing well.

      Two personal favourites:

      • The in-depth article on portable solar chargers. Getting a solar panel may not be applicable or affordable for everyone. It is a more advanced item. But to me this article exemplifies the attitude, professionalism, and effort that makes The Prepared such a great website – a knowledgeable expert spent many hours actually testing the products, using relevant equipment such as a multimeter and load testers. They walk through the math, explain subject expertise, explain why you can’t just plug in a phone and watch the battery percentage chart, explain the math, and share their data. This is a great article that displays how they know what they are talking about, that they’re not here to sow fear or to profit off of short-term panic, and that they really do want to build the best possible, long-term content. It’s great work.
      • Book Review: The Reslient Farm and Homestead. I ended up buying a copy of this book on Josh’s recommendation. It has a lot of interesting discussions on mindset and long-term thinking. It got me interested in permaculture.

      The Prepared “Best Of” Preparedness Mindset Tour:

      Once you feel comfortable or feel you have the basics down, I humbly submit a series of links that had a big impact on my thinking:

      1. “What if History really isn’t any guide?”. It’s better to be generally prepared and keep an open mind, than to get specific about events from the past. This post inspired me to read “The Black Swan”.
      2. The Split Screen Effect. “Weirdness” and events don’t always happen to everyone, and don’t always effect everywhere all at once. Keeping this in mind can help you to deal with disasters, and better understand other people’s reactions to them.
      3. Preparing is just “flattening the curve” for everything else. From food to water to power to finances.
      4. “Early is on-time, and on-time is too late”. It is okay to be acting out of lockstep with your peers or neighbours. Think about the big, important things you depend on, or that could be most easily disrupted. Working to improve them is okay.
      5. Stay calm. Take small, positive steps.
      6. Building a resilient mindset. Bias disclaimer: I am a practicing Stoic.
      7. Make a plan, and stick to the plan.
      8. The Big Picture.

      These articles were written and posted over a long period of time. Taken together in series, they have helped me to improve my mindset, enhance the way I think about preparing, and analyze my actions and preparations from a higher level. It has helped me to think about what my goals are, and why.

      Taken together, I think these articles outline a fantastic “Preparedness Mindset 101”. It’s a cohesive thought process, where the whole is more than the sum of its parts.
      I have returned to these essays multiple times over the past year or two, and it has helped me a lot to stay calm, worry less, and continue making productive steps on ‘the plan’.

      Best of luck to you! We’d love to hear about your favourites once you decide what you like.