My Personal “Preparedness” Board of Advisors

24 Apr

With so many preparedness voices out there (with the ever growing number of emergency preparedness “experts” on the internet and otherwise), I thought I’d focus my post today on a preparedness planning idea I’ve used that’s helped me filter and safely navigate all the information (and misinformation) as well as keep things balanced in my life.  It’s not always 100% fool proof, but it’s a whole lot better than going it alone.

First off, as far as preparedness matters go, I don’t have to tell you it’s easy to get overwhelmed, distracted, scared and even sometimes downright frozen from all the information that’s available and not knowing what to do with it all.  It’s easy to get wrapped up in the busyness of collecting ideas feeling like you’re being productive simply by collecting them, but yet at the end of the day (or week or month) you don’t seem to have much to show for it.

What do you work on first and who do you trust for advice?

one thing


A Personal “Preparedness” Board of Advisors

In college I took a personal development class which I remember enjoying a lot.  One idea from it in particular stuck with me which I’ve used over and over again.  In the case of preparedness and gaining a personal direction that’s true to you, it may be something you’ll want to think about using.

The idea is of creating for yourself a personal “dream team” of advisors. It’s contained entirely on paper (I like imagining them all sitting down to a big table, where I can ask them anything) these people are, in a way, your “self designated” personal coaches and guides.  Some might be people you’ve never met but have learned a lot from, and some (as on my own list) could be dear friends or family who have specific talents for which you call them on for real advice.

For myself, because I’ve selected the people on my team carefully for the qualities they each possess, I find myself much more grounded and stable in the way I look at the big picture of preparedness. I don’t get swayed very easily by trends I see pop up from time to time because I know where my own “center” is, based on the people I want to pattern myself after.  Also, by going to this envisioned group in my planning  and asking “What would ______ do if he/she were in this situation?, or what has he/she already done to solve this problem?” I find I’m able to discover creative alternatives to preparedness challenges that work for me that I may not have thought of otherwise.

Board of Advisors for print

In the end your preparedness plan has to be your preparedness plan.  It has to belong to you and cooperate with the way you see life.  For this reason, it’s helpful to start with a foundation by which you’ll decide what’s important and what’s not.

I’ve created a blank sheet here for anyone who might be interested in trying out this approach for themselves.

Click to PRINT HERE ==> Board of Advisors for print


Bringing your ideas and challenges to the Board

The next idea here is to move the things you see online and in books (all you want to get done) onto an actual planning list where it can begin to either become real (meaning you start working on it), fade into the background to be focused on at another time, or eliminated all together.

All the online “pins” and bookmarks you’re keeping?  My advice is to take the first baby step of writing them down in black and white in your own handwriting to decide which ones you really want to do.  You might be surprised, the act of simply writing it down often makes it easy to see that it’s not a priority for you at this time.

Once you have a list of “maybe’s” (no firm commitment required just yet), take your list to your board of advisors to to decide which area feels best to begin and you’ll soon recognize certain things will float to the top.  If you can make a phone call to some of the personal acquaintances in the group and verbally commit to them on the goal you have set, you’ll nearly be certain to do it, not wanting to let them down!

maybe list


Click to PRINT HERE ==> maybe list

Many times in the process you get stuck.  There’s a road block of some kind in your way that keeps you from completing your goal and you don’t know what to do.  Once again, it helps me to write it all out when I’m stuck, so I don’t get discouraged and give up on the whole project.  Just make a note and move on.

When you’re stuck on something, this is the perfect opportunity to take your problems to your advisors to see what they’d do (or have done).  Don’t feel like you have to reinvent the wheel all the time.  By following these people’s footsteps you’ll find a lot of help when you don’t have the answers yourself.

current challenges

Click to PRINT HERE ==> current challenges

My Own “Preparedness” Dream Team

For myself, my Board of Advisors includes three mentors who I’ve never personally met, yet who resonate with me as being “the real deal”.  They aren’t necessarily out there trying to sell me a book or a program, but instead really live what they preach, and have done so for many years.  Three of them are public faces you may or may not know and three (for myself) are people I know personally (two friends and a family member) who I really do call up and ask questions to whenever the need comes up.  These are my “rocks” in the world of preparedness that keep me going straight toward my goal.   If you’ve read the blog for a while, you’ll likely look at some of the examples I share and say “yep, I see where she got it!”.

The Chairman of the Board that I’ve chosen for myself, based on my faith, is Jesus Christ.  This is because for me all my decisions, preparedness and otherwise, go through Him.  My faith is a cornerstone in keeping balance and direction in my preparedness planning and it’s something I hold dearly to in trying to navigate where my energy should best be spent.


Board of Advisors


Allow me to introduce you…

So, if you don’t mind, I’d like to introduce you to a few of the people who I’ve learned so much from.  Maybe they’ll end up inspiring you as well!

Jim Phillips



Jim is a cold weather, emergency kit and sanitation expert who heads up the Safe Harbor Alliance website as well as teaches classes and hosts a weekly online radio show.  He’s been an example to me in realizing the importance of gaining “skills over stuff” and testing for myself what really works based on first hand experience.

A few of my favorite quotes:

Blog sayings6


blog sayings1


Blog sayings


Jackie Clay


I’ve loved reading Jackie Clay’s articles in Backwoods Home Magazine for how “down to earth” she is and willing to share what she knows while at the same time making things feel so manageable even to a novice.  She focuses on homesteading and canning but writes on a lot of different topics.  She’s a voice of encouragement, someone who’s real about preparedness (and knows practically everything there is to know), but yet has a way of still encouraging others who are just starting out.  For me, I the thing I love best about her is her attitude.  I can imagine her cheering me on even with the small steps I make.

Here’s one of my favorite quotes from her having to do with learning to cook with food storage (taken from this article):

blog sayings4


Leslie Probert


Leslie Probert is a popular preparedness speaker and author living in Utah.  She writes for Deseret News specifically.  Thanks to Valerie at Prepared LDS Family,  here’s an index of Leslie’s articles which Valerie compiled for those of us living outside of UT.  Leslie was eating out of her food storage long before most anyone else was, so of course to me that’s a cool point right there.

Besides that, I’ve appreciated a lot of her perspectives on preparedness in general, most especially her take on the “why’s” to prepare.  From her I’ve taken a motivation to prepare based on positive, well thought out rational reasons which make sense to me.  I find I’m a lot more productive working with “positives” in mind rather than feeling like I’m being chased because the end of the world is coming.

Click on the image to enlarge it if needed.  Also, you can read the article this was taken from HERE.

blog sayings5


My last bit of advice:

Preparedness is a process that takes time.  It’s easy to get overwhelmed, but just don’t let it get to you.  Day by day, so long as we’re dedicated and pointed in the right direction, we can get there.  Decide where you want to end up and guard against following rabbit holes that aren’t for you.  Save your energy for what’s important by tailoring your preparedness plans to yourself and your family’s needs combined with what you want to accomplish in the end.

Well, I hope this little pep talk/ organizational idea has been helpful!  I’d love to hear who YOU look to as an example in your preparedness.

11 Responses to “My Personal “Preparedness” Board of Advisors”

  1. Tauna April 24, 2014 at 9:57 pm #

    Excellent post. Thanks for sharing.
    I have totally loved Backwoods Home Magazine for the last 15 years. Such great information.

    • Megan April 24, 2014 at 11:38 pm #

      Thanks, Tauna. 🙂

  2. LaRene Grover April 24, 2014 at 11:51 pm #

    Thanks, Megan, You must have known that I was getting all uptight about all the things with food storage that there is to do. Love your post with all of your ideas, it’s the nudge that I needed to get going into the right direction again!!! I’m having quite a time learning to do things all over again, and to re-do things so I’ll be able to get it done sitting instead of standing. Things are hard to get together and to get done. Thanks for getting me going again. I know it needs done now. Hope you know how much I appreciate all the hard work you put in to help.

    • Megan April 25, 2014 at 8:59 am #

      Thanks, LaRene. I’m so glad it’s timely for you. You’re not the only one, I think everyone goes through the anxiety at some point. For me, letting go of all the brain work in this way (and relying more heavily on my faith/prayer to direct me as to where to focus) has solved it. There’s still a lot I need to do but it’s no longer stressful, it’s just work that I’m chipping away at. I always appreciate your comments, thanks!!

  3. Kathleen O'Meal April 25, 2014 at 8:44 am #

    sorry got bounced out…will try again….this is excellent advice…personal revelation through Jesus Christ is most important, followed by those you know are living the way you want to live…our group also has a board of directors…not a personal board of directors, but a group of people who have dedicated their lives to studying and researching particular subjects. These have come together to carefully consider information in the preparedness maket to make recommendations for those in our group…we have an open 2 way channel that allows all to participate in decision making….it is so true that surrounding yourselves with likeminded, honest, and skilled people can only benefit you in working towards not only becoming prepared yourself, but also prepare to help your neighbors and extended families….there is so much out there that is working against these efforts by so many people in our Country and in other Countries…I have an off grid farm but do not live on this farm…my home is in another County…when I approached town code/tax assessment about going off grid at my home…my tax assessor told me if I did that, she would raise my taxes so high it would not be worth the effort…luckily I got her on tape and had a third party witness with me…but in presenting this abuse to authorites in state I am finding they either do not care, or are making excuses for these people…and these are on our disaster preparedness group for our community…these are not the kind of people I would ever surround myself with…..oh choose your persoanl board wisely

  4. Susan April 25, 2014 at 9:53 am #

    I think anyone who has started working on a pantry or food storage closet knows about rabbit holes!!
    I like the idea of making EP a matter of spiritual planning first, thus having God involved in the process is essential. And experts? My mother has a cellar and bottles fruit vegetables from her garden, and stores other supplies. It has been a way of life for depression era people who take the time and effort to stay prepared. They know from experience what hunger is, what rations are, and what making do means.

    • Megan April 25, 2014 at 10:17 am #

      Amen to that! Sometimes the best examples for motivation out there are the people we know.

  5. Brittney April 26, 2014 at 7:16 pm #

    This is an excellent post. Such great advice. I love it! Thank you!

    • Megan April 27, 2014 at 7:32 am #

      Thanks Brittney! You’re welcome.

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