The first thing to do, above all else, is to not panic. Yes, you just got awful news.
Yes, it’s scary.
No, panic won’t help.
So relax. Have a nice cup of coffee, or tea, or whatever will settle you.
Then grab a pen and paper and think.
Go over in your mind where you’re at. Now chances are this won’t be where you REALLY are at, but at least it’ll be a good starting point.
Think about different categories. Food. Water. Medical. Defensive. Fuel/Energy. And so on…
Don’t just think about having stuff on hand to consume, think about how you can become a producer for these things as well. For example, food storage is great and important, but having the ability to grow your own stuff is critical.
While you’re thinking, take notes. Take them in whatever order they occur to you.
If you’ve done brainstorming before, you’ll know how this works. You’ll be thinking about one thing and another idea will pop into your head from left field.
Write it down, and keep pondering. Now is not the time to organize, now is the time to get it all down on paper.
Eventually you’ll start running out of things to write down, so now it’s time to coherently organize your thoughts.
I typically like to organize them along categories (like the ones mentioned above) and then into rough themes, usually around storage, preservation, and replenishing.
You’ll find that as you organize, you’ll remember other things … no problem, just get it written down and eventually organized.
This still isn’t the time to go off half cocked. Get the lists together. That’s all you’re doing right now.
Take as long as you need, but no longer. A couple of hours is usually enough.
Next time we’ll discuss the next step, prioritization. Or how we take this overwhelming pile of tasks and turn it into something we can actually deal with.