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There is a saying I have heard more than once, “If you think money’s the root of all evil, try to live without it.” There is absolutely no better saying to get our attention as to the importance of financial ability in our preparedness journeys and our lives in general. In the times that i have been fortunate enough to not have major financial concerns, I also didn’t have the foresight and understanding of the ways that I could use that to build a more sustainable financial future. Now I’m in my early forties and pretty much starting over with plenty of debt and barely enough income to break even. Now I still have some things i can liquidate, and I have yet to miss a meal, but it would be a much better situation had I done some financial prepping along the way. Products and supplies we need to be adequately prepared cost money. Even more vital than those is the training that is available to get the most utility out of purchases. There is free training and YouTube information than can take us a long way, but there is no substitute for actual hands on class time with a competent instructor. I’ll cover more on this as we get deeper into the multiple areas we need to be prepared, but rest assured, we’ll need money to get the best training out there. Financial prepping is simply making a plan to maintain our ability to pay for your lifestyle and have contingency plans should something hinder our ability to earn a living, such as an injury or a layoff.
Traditional Financial Prepping
The standard means of financial gain is that of having a job. It is almost always conditioned in us from childhood to grow up, do well in school, and get a good job. Our entire system of capitalism hinges on the willingness of people to provide knowledge and labor in return for money. We may face a situation some day where barter is temporarily the primary means of gaining goods and services, but that is separate consideration of prepping to deal with.
Along with earning income, we must find a way to preserve some. Saving has been the traditional approach to this and will always be part of financial preparation. I don’t know of any financial advisor who doesn’t recommend having at least a few month’s worth of income available in cash or bank accounts. Other assets are more likely to make us additional income, however they also must be liquidated to use in an emergency and the timelines vary on how long that liquidation process takes.
Welcome to the part of financial preparedness I wish I knew and had planned for when I was in better financial shape. All of our lives we are told things about assets such as our homes are our greatest asset. The truth is, homes, cars, boats, and other “assets” we think of are really liabilities. Yes, homes can appreciate in value but consider assets as something that makes you money. A house that we rent out is an asset. The house we live in is a liability. We have to maintain it for the long term to keep it livable and there is no guarantee that we will ultimately profit from it when we sell. This may sound crazy and for me to try and explain this in detail wouldn’t be remotely practical so I suggest starting out on a new plan of financial thinking the same way i did by reading one of the best books on the subject “Rich Dad, Poor Dad”.
Rich Dad, Poor Dad, by Robert Kiyosaki
New Economy Financial Prepping
The new economy is the shift from traditional economic paradigms such as those mentioned above to a more serviced based economy that centers strongly on the use of the internet as one of its most important tools. Many of the skills we need as preppers take time to develop. We can purchase the tools, however the skills must be learned or they will be of little use to us when the time comes to put them into play. Learning to shoot, farm, preserve food, and render lifesaving medical aid aren’t things we can do well by simply reading about them or having the latest gear and gadgets. Therefore, we need to clear out some time if we wish to become self sufficient in these skills. If we have to sell all of our time to our employers for money to survive, we have little left to either increase skills, or enjoy the fruits of our labor. This is where the New economy ideas may well be able to help clear some time.
Much like the previous section, it is much better for me to defer to an expert on the subject than to try to explain it in detail. Tim Ferriss really goes deep to explain all of the ways that we can use the digital universe to find ways to recoup some of our time by simplifying our lives and realizing what we have to be directly involved in vs. the things that will be just fine if we let someone else handle it. It sounds far fetched at first, but reading “The Four Hour Workweek” opened my eyes to so many different ways to look at solving time vs. money obstacles. I first saw these two books recommended in tandem at Graywolf Survival and I feel that sharing it in the same manner is the most beneficial, so after you read Rich Dad, step right into Tim’s book and the lights will start coming on for you immediately.
4-Hour Workweek, by Timothy Ferriss
Like many aspects of preparedness, this one isn’t easy and forces us to take a look at habits that we need to change. I know in my own life, I am still fighting the battle between what I feel and what I know in several areas and personal finance is one of the most relevant. This blog and the adjoining YouTube channel are not only to share information, but as a public documentation of my personal development in many of the areas I discuss.
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