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As a martial arts instructor I teach my students self defense which includes not just the fighting techniques but also the mental awareness aka“street smarts”, being prepared and attentive of a situation before actually needing to use those techniques. Self defense also encompasses self preservation.

Self preservation goes larger than just oneself but others you care for. It means being prepared for a wider, larger incident, not just a physical assault. It could be a natural disaster, a pandemic, lockdowns, curfews, power outage, civil unrest, war, food/supply shortage, economic downturns, fire. Some situations are worse than others, but a general preparation plan would be needed to survive.

As the word self preservation has “self” at the beginning, that means one should be competent enough to endure these situations by oneself, and not rely on others. That does not mean we just think of ourselves, having a network of others that you trust would be practical. My main point is don’t rely on the government. They might offer aid, but one can’t solely depend on them.

At a young age, I learned that every household should have supplies to last at least 3 days. That means food, water, hygiene products, first aid kit, alternative cooking & heating system, radio, batteries, cash, infant/baby needs, medication, emergency light sources.

Can you imagine having to buy a supply of food/water as a disaster is occurring? Not only are you fighting a crowd of stressed-out people who want the same items as you, but your financial budget more than likely did not allot for this.

Breaking down each item:

  • Food: Non-perishable foods such as canned foods, freezed dried, packaged, dried beans/fruits, nuts, rice.
  • Water: We can only last about 3 days without water. This shows how important to have access to a supply of water. Water is used for many things: hydration, cleaning our bodies/teeth, cooking, cleaning dishes, and cleaning wounds. Having extra bottles of water, water purification tablets and water filters would be recommended.
  • Hygiene products: Dental care products, female hygiene products, soap/hand sanitizer, shampoo, garbage bags, toilet paper(remember that!),and other cleaning products(eg.bleach,vinegar etc).
  • First Aid kit: I was very stunned to see that most people don’t have a proper first aid kits. One can make one’s own kit, or buy a ready made one. Making one’s own is usually lest costly.
  • Alternative cooking system: This would be important in a situation like a power outage. A portable propane/butane stove are good to have in these situations. Make sure to have extra gas cans.
  • Alternative heating system: A kerosene/propane/oil heating stove are a necessity should there be a power outage for an extended period of time during the cold winter months.
  • Radio: A hand held radio, especially with alternative power sources like handcrank or solar power, will be practical to receive information during an emergency situation.
  • Batteries: The majority of your emergency devices run on batteries, therefore having extra batteries at hand will come handy.
  • Cash: Having actual cash will be needed in a large power outage or if the banking system went down. It’s incredible to notice how many people entirely rely on their bank cards and have no cash on them at all.
  • Infant/child needs: An extra stock of diapers, formula,wipes etc will be handy to have.
  • Medication: Extra prescription medication will be necessary for anyone suffering from a chronic illness. If possible, have extra stock. Also, any over the counter medication would be good to have. Such as pain/fever medication, anti-diarrhea medicine, cold/flu medicine, anti-nausea medication, and antihistamine.
  • Emergency light sources: Confronting a disaster is daunting ordeal. Facing a disaster in the dark can be terrifying. Light sources such as candles, solar lighting, fuel powered light sources and flashlights are good to have around at all times.

There is no need to panic after reading this and buy everything in a panic. Rather, every grocery/shopping trip, buy extra items that might need more supply. Be prepared, not scared.

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