Without going into details about why prepare, my philosophical view on preparedness, and the like, this is what I’d consider if I were getting started today.
Recognize that what we do when we prepare is to prepare for life to change. Generally those changes aren’t going to be massive, like an asteroid strike, but will be smaller, and less impactful.
Our lives are all constructed out of a bunch of different systems, all of which support each other in some way.
Most people build their lives like a house of cards, and when any one of those systems is removed or becomes unstable, it impacts the entire house. In many cases, even the slightest tremor can collapse the house.
If, however, you build your life like a house made from matchsticks, you can design something that is fully reinforced and stable, even when you shake the table. You can remove any (or several) support and your house will stand.
Back to reality here … we all leverage many systems as part of our life.
You depend on the interstate transportation system for most of the things you consume. Think about how you would fare if that system collapsed. Now consider the same collapse if you had an orchard, a garden, and a deep pantry … how would you do?
You depend on grid power for electricity and more. If the grid goes out, how will that impact your life? What if you had alternative power generation, a generator, and redundant heating and cooling systems? How bad would that grid outage be now?
You depend on central water utilities for water. What happens if the water system is damanged, interrupted, or intentionally sabotaged? How much better off would you be if you had stored water, a way to purify water, a rain water catchment system and maybe even a well?
You depend on your job for income to pay for everything else. What happens if you get laid off or your company goes out of business? Now if you had several other sources of income besides your main job, how different would the impact of that job loss be?
The key to start preparing effectively is to identify those systems that you depend on heavily and work to reinforce those systems. Identify what would happen if those systems failed, and how you could reduce that impact.
Next? Well, that’s up to you. Identify, then prioritize, then act.