Prepper fatigue

I have seen quite a few people either burn out or give up if they are a prepper. I understand as it can get tough to keep your spirits up and stay motivated in the face of so much doom and gloom.  You might not have many friends or family that supports what you are doing or even ridicule you, which can make it doubly tough to keep on going.  I think many of us have gone through those stages at least I can say I have dealt with it and I have done  a few things that seem to have helped me get through those times.

  • Take a vacation from prepping and the news for a week or two.  If you have more than 6 months worth don’t go shopping for prep items for a week or two and live on your preps for awhile.  You are getting a little payback/reward for all that prepping you have done and you can see it as sort of test but the main thing you are doing is recharging yourself mentally and spiritually.
  • Get out of dither mode:  I did this a lot, as I had a hard time figuring out what to do next so I would of blast off in all directions and not have a goal I wanted to achieve so I wasted time, energy and a little bit of money.  One thing that helped keep me focus is I would put myself in disasters in the news and how I would handle it. It might be a power outage, no tap water,  a storm or a riot and I would start walking through the steps mentally and even do a test of that situation.  The test can be a simply or as complex as you want to make it such as, if you are running a generator are your power cords in good shape and working?  Have you tested the cords recently and know they work?
  • Start working next year’s goals and write them down.  Then write down the steps of the plan to make it happen. It doesn’t have to directly related to prepping but I bet in some way it will end up being a skill or product that will be of value if only to you. Don’t be afraid of failing as that is often when I learn the most about doing something.  Also LIFE will come along and screw up all your plans sometimes and you will have to adapt. I believe the ability to adapt and not panic will be one of the most useful skills you will learn if the SHTF.  So don’t look at as a failure, think of it as redefining your objectives!
  • Try to stay positive and moving forward towards a goal. This is probably one of the hardest for most people as it is very easy to become pessimistic.  I tend to be more of a natural optimist and it takes a lot of work sometimes to keep that sort of outlook when everything seems to be falling apart.  Remember the only thing you can control is yourself and your actions!  I think that was the hardest lesson for me to learn as I have a tendency to want to fix things and there are just some things I can’t fix.  So rather than “bang my head against a wall” I just stopped playing the game.

But Jamie the world is falling apart and I can’t possibly stop watching the news or prepping or whatever for a week or two.  Well guess what the world is always falling apart in some way and how much news do you think you are going to get if things get really bad?  I’m sure if the “Zombie Apocalypse”  starts you will pick up on it happening simply by watching those around you.  You can always cut your “news vacation” short if you need too.  You don’t be completely stressed out before things go sideways.

16 Responses to Prepper fatigue

  1. Marilyn says:

    I also think it is easy to get burned out and give up when one has been prepping for many years and has not yet had a need for most of the items that aren’t used on a daily or weekly basis. I struggle with that and have to have a good talk with myself so I don’t give up.

    • Jamie says:

      Marilyn: I have noticed my definition of a disaster is a lot different than it was a few years ago.
      I don’t even think about getting the generator started in a power outage until 6 hours pass and I want to make sure the fridge and freezer keeps things cold. I don’t freak out about getting fuel or oil and any last minute shopping cause I have it already.

      I think many of the really long term preppers don’t realize how they react to a disaster because it is not a disaster for them, and at worse they are mildly inconvenienced.

      I don’t think I’m a newbie anymore, perhaps a semi-talented amateur but I don’t panic if a simple power or water outage happens. I got that covered, as I have been through it and tested my preps.

      I have to say the Ebola thing shook me as I did not plan for a deadly pandemic. Self quarantine was not an issue, but how could I as individual handle such a dangerous disease? I’m not sure I can though I have done my best to be proactive and finish up a lot of medical preps. Which was simple to do because I could dedicate all my funds towards Ebola prep and not worry about any of the basics as they are already taken care of.

      I know I have been prepping for the “EVENT” but I have used my preps when money was short because of a vet bill or when my water main went out and it took 5 days to get it replaced. So the peace of mind alone is worth the effort.

  2. Dannyboy53 says:

    Thank you both Jamie and Marilyn, good points and good advice. It does happen and folks must take a break from it because it is so important.

    Mary and I have been doing this going on two years but we found it can get “out of hand”!

    • Jamie says:

      Dannyboy: Speaking for myself a couple of years back I sort of got focused on the “Event” rather than just doing my best to get self-reliant and do the best I could in any situation.

      If you are a serious prepper and not just a “dabler” I have found you can never be as prepared as you want as there is always more to learn and do, and the more you learn the more there is to do! I find it a challenge and enjoyable some find that annoying as you never really finish.

      Prepping and self-reliance for me is a journey not a destination!

      • Dannyboy53 says:

        Exactly right Jamie! We research, plan, and inventory as we go along but each time we think we are where we want/need to be, another door opens. It is, as you say enjoyable. It’s very satisfying to know you are better prepared and it increases your confidence.

        Prepping is absolutely a challenge but folks simply have to hit it head on if they are serious about being prepared. We realize now that we were nowhere near as self reliant two years ago as we thought.

      • Jamie says:

        Dannyboy: I have couple new ideas that are really interesting one is Aquaponics and a perma-culture idea of a “food forest” in an urban setting via a small city lot. It seems to be a combination of the English and Japanese gardens (to me) in looks but sort of food and herb focused. This could be a lot of fun to try out.

  3. Emily Summer says:

    I find that you always have good advice and tips that I try to follow. You are right on this one, too. Time to come up for air for a couple of weeks and clear my mind of disaster thinking, too. Without realizing it, I got tunnel vision about prepping. Day and night, it seems. So…..time to go out and lighten up. Will come back with a fresh perspective and renewed interest. Thanks

    • Jamie says:

      Emily: many of us get to focused on the bad stuff at least I do at times but there is a very good chance the Earth will keep spinning and the Sun and moon will still rise and set and life will go on. If it doesn’t we sure as heck won’t need to worry about prepping!
      From my perspective life is made up of little things. I got great joy from helping my sister and cutting her tree limb. Okay, I was showing off a bit. Please God don’t “smite” me for pride. I am really trying to avoid the smiting thing as it never turns out well.

      Okay I tend get a bit overly serious at times and forget how wonderful a gift life is and we can do whatever we want if we are willing to pay the price. Yeah I’m good with the price and I will do my best and sometimes your best is taking a break.

      The only thing we have to do in life is die. That might be unpleasant to some people but as far as I know everyone dies. So you might as have fun and live life while alive. No I don’t ascribe to the “Eat, Drink and Make merry for tomorrow we die.” I think you should be a beacon of sorts and help were you can.

  4. I’ve been doing this for 30 years + so it’s so firmly integrated into our life style here that I don’t think of it as something separate. I never get tired of it , anymore than I do of things like fixing the roof. That is to say, I just do it, whether it’s fun or not, if it has to be done.

  5. Marilyn says:

    Good comment Harry. We’ve been at it 30 years plus and it is just a way of life. As we learn more we add different items. That does give us challenges which make the whole prepping more fun. I also agree with Jamie about ones perspective on a disaster. Our power went out for 1 1/2 hrs. from a wind storm last month. It seemed like it was more effort than it was worth to get lanterns or candles out so we sat together and had a good visit. A disaster can also be anything from unforeseen expenses, loss of elployment etc to an EMP, or something similar. At any rate, having preps to fall back on is nothing but peace of mind.

  6. kymber says:

    jamie – you are DEFINITELY a semi-talented amateur…but those are your words and not mine. my words would be that in a very short time you learned very quickly how to become a self-sufficent, self-reliant person who has much to offer to any group that you would like to join – you are what i would call an ASSET! and i think that between you and your family – you could handle whatever evil this way comes. like you, we don’t know what big event to prepare for, so by trying our best to just “be prepared” and live every day that way – heck – we are having a blast, just living each day, and are no longer worried about whatever big event is going to happen. and in reading your last several posts, i think that you are there, too. like Harry and Marilyn have already said – after you practice and prepare long enough – it’s like yawn – whatever. it just becomes life. and nothing is more exciting than finding a blog or reading a news article and thinking “heck – i never thought of that!”. and bingo-bango – you are off, living your life and preparing yourself to be even more self-sufficient and self-reliant. it was from Kurt Saxon that we first learned that being able to take care of yourself was a joyous way to live. we don’t agree with most of his politics..but hey – the man taught us how to tire garden!!!

    jamie – your posts are helpful to major survivalists, major preppers, people that don’t know diddely-squat…and everyone in between. keep it up girl. you know that you are helping others!

    your friend,

    • Jamie says:

      kymber: I write what I do to prepeare, rather than the Prepper “lists” of what to get that I see on a lot of sites. It seems more real to me. Writing things out seems to help spark new ideas, sort of like I’m brainstorming with myself.

      Speaking of Kurt Saxon I’m interested in his raising catfish in a barrel idea for a renewable protien source. I love catfish and with the work I’m doing with composting next year I should be able to start a worm bin for feeding the fish.

      • S.Lynn says:

        Reminds me of the saying “like shooting fish in a barrel”. I’m in Wilder this week waiting for a frig delivery that’s been delayed once again.

  7. Jamie says:

    S. Lynn We need to meet if you are cool with that. You probably know of Karcher mall I’m a chubby white gal with a blue walker and I’m there M-F from about 10:00 -11:30 AM. Or you could email me jlsim66 at if you are not good with face to face yet.

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