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The great recession of the 21st century has been marching forward for seven plus years. These have not been easy times.
For the enlightened, these seven years have been troubling and extremely stressful. The stagnant economy, the threat of a global financial collapse, pandemics, terrorist activity, and an overall belief of being “stuck in place” have put most people on edge.
Sadly, the stresses created by being stuck and going nowhere have not lessened since the recession began in 2008. If anything, they are greater. As additional and questionable government controls are mandated and as insidious corporate shenanigans and corruption are uncovered, that stressful edge is likely to get steeper over time with no end in sight.
In this type of environment, it is easy to become frustrated and immune to taking steps to effect change. Instead, many go about their day, afraid of rocking the boat and too fearful to even think about the consequences of a major crisis or natural disaster. Even those that have stockpiled food and water and have learned survival skills such as fire building, sheltering and emergency medicine, wonder whether things will be so bad that we will not make it through.
There is an idiom that is commonly used to describe one’s ability to deal with difficult and stressful situations. It is called “Rolling with the Punches” and it means accepting, whatever happens, dealing with it and moving on in a healthy and productive manner. It means having the skills to deal with difficult situations, no matter what.
Learning to roll with the punches is a survival skill that can be honed and polished, ready to serve you when faced with the distress of a tough life situation. Today I share 13 ways to roll with the punches. Or, put another way, 13 tips for learning how to cope and endure when the SHTF and your world falls apart.
13 Ways To Roll With the Punches
1. Be Decisive. Face it; most problems will not disappear by themselves so you might as well take action and get something done to solve the issues and problems at hand. Make decisions and act. You may not always make the very best decision but you will be doing something and it is that “something” which really matters.
2. Establish good ties and social connections within your community. Establish close ties with friends and family, stressing quality rather than quantity. Having these relationships will provide you with positive enforcement not only when times are good, but also when times are bad.
3. Have goals. Even in difficult times, goals are important. They don’t have to be big goals and, as a matter of fact, smaller, more manageable goals are far more attainable. Say, for example, you want to begin a preparedness program. Identify small tasks and complete them one by one, month by month, task by task. See 12 Months of Prepping – The First Year for some ideas.
4. Turn difficult situations into avenues for personal growth. Learn from each challenge. If you have a problem that seems difficult to solve, let your innate curiosity take over and educate yourself. Become stronger through education, secure in the knowledge that no matter what your age, you are still learning and growing.
5. Trust your instincts and remember you are capable of doing great things. Instincts are developed from a lifetime of experience. It does not matter if you are 20 or if you are 80. You still have life experiences upon which to draw some conclusions and to help you make smart decisions. Trust yourself to make the very best decision you can and remember that you have the ability to prevail, no matter what.
6. Maintain your optimism. You can’t change what has happened in the past, so accept the past and begin to look forward to the future. Anticipate what is coming with a sense of challenge even if the only challenge is to get through the day with food in your belly and love in your heart.
7. Understand your strength and weaknesses. Get out a pad of paper and make two columns; one for strengths and the other for weaknesses. You don’t necessarily have to change but from this list, you can learn to understand and appreciate those circumstances where you will excel as well as those where you may fall short. Use this knowledge as a tool for building your confidence and your self-esteem.
8. Don’t forget that time will heal. It is natural to feel overwhelmed and stressed during a crisis situation. But remember, time really does heal. Take baby steps toward overcoming the bad situation and congratulate yourself each time you meet with even the smallest modicum of success. Remind yourself that a month, a year, a decade from now, things will be different.
9. Appreciate and accept change. It is trite to say that change is good because sometimes it is not. But whether the change is good or not, it is a part of life and is often something that we cannot control. The best way to cope with unwanted change is to accept it and adjust your plans accordingly.
10. Stay fit and healthy. Take care of yourself. Eat a healthy diet, drink plenty of water and get some exercise each and every day. And most important, take some time for yourself so that you can enjoy simple pleasures such as a good book, some delightful music and the company of good friends.
11. Be proactive. Do something meaningful each and every day. By doing something worthwhile each and every day, you will have a sense of purpose. Just remember to make this an individual thing. Meaningful should be defined wholly in your own terms and not those of someone else.
12. Educate yourself at the “School of Hard Knocks”. Life is a learning experience that will teach you things that you will never learn at a traditional school or the university. Take advantage of learning opportunities by eagerly trying something new, even if it is outside of your normal comfort zone. Read as much as you can then get out there and just do it. Use the one-two combination of hands and brains to acquire skills that will get you through both the best of times and worst of times.
13. Ask your self “What is the worst that can happen?” Dale Carnegie said: “First ask yourself: What is the worst that can happen? Then prepare to accept it. Then proceed to improve on the worst.” To this day, that remains sound advice.
The Final Word
For most people, rolling with punches does not come naturally. That said, doing so will not be an option if we expect to prevail in a society where punches seem to outnumber victories. Poor health, financial woes, family issues, fear of a disaster, and a deep concern about the future can and do create unbelievable stresses on our lives.
Increasing your ability to quickly recover from a crisis or a disaster may mean the difference between getting through life’s challenges with gusto and gumption instead of muddling through the day with fear and distress. Just remember that success can come from the smallest of accomplishments. The baby steps that seem inconsequential at the time have the ability to add up and become something much greater than the individual components.
I hope that you will take a good look at these thirteen tips and practice at least two or three so that you can build up your resilience and ability cope no matter how tough the situation in your life and our world might get. At the end of the day, it will be your ability to recover quickly that provides the key to long term survival in these uncertain times.
Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
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Spotlight: 11 Steps to Living a Strategic Life: A Guide to Survival During Uncertain Times
This little book will provide you with the motivation to get started or stay on track with a self-reliant life. 11 Steps to Living a Strategic Life was co-authored with my long time pal, George Ure and was truly a labor of love between us.
Bargain Bin: If you are like me and believe there is a possibility that things will be going to heck, you may want to consider some of the items in today’s bargain bin.
The Beginning Of The End: This is Michael Snyder’s first novel. If you want to know what things in America are going to look like in a few years, this is the book to read. It is a mystery/thriller set in the United States in the near future. Need I say more?
Lodge Pre-Seasoned Cast-Iron Skillet with Red Silicone Hot Handle Holder, 12-inch: A cast iron skillet will serve you well if you are required to cook outdoors because the grid is down. Once you have a cast iron skillet, you will use it for everything, indoors or out. See: Every Prepper Needs a Big Beautiful Cast Iron Skillet and 7 Tips for Cast Iron Mavens or Soon-To-Be Mavens.
Clara’s Kitchen: Wisdom, Memories, and Recipes from the Great Depression: If you don’t know about Clara, be sure to read Depression Cooking: A Visit to Clara’s Kitchen.
Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking: At an average cost of 50 cents a loaf, this bread is easy, delicious and inexpensive to make. Making your own bread is a skill everyone should have.
How to Live on Wheat: Everything you need to know about wheat.
Emergency Mylar Thermal Blankets (Pack of 10): I do believe in helping my neighbors in the community so a supply of these will be handy to hand out to those in need. You will be surprised at how warm these will keep you. Be sure to test one out in advance so that you have the confidence to trust the blanket in an emergency.
Holding Your Ground: Preparing for Defense if it All Falls Apart: This book, by Joe Nobody, is the book you that will teach you how to defend your homestead in the event of civil unrest or a collapse.
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