We just passed the fourth of July and for most of us, that is a day we spend with family and friends exercising our freedoms and celebrating the independence of our great nation as we also remember the people that have paid the ultimate price to earn it. We hope everyone out there enjoyed theirs as much as we enjoyed ours.
This year, we were fortunate enough to have a long time friend come to town to spend a couple of days with us around the holiday and join in our celebration. While having a conversation as we walked through the house, we found ourselves in our music room. My friend asked me when was the last time I had picked up my guitar and played a little, recognizing that my wife and I have been more than a little busy this year working on various projects here around our home with putting in the fruit tree orchard, getting our hens and building the chicken coop, not to mention our ever-growing vegetable garden and with me working on my new business as well as both of us working out full time jobs. He asked because he just knows how much I enjoy it. With my friend also being of a preparedness mind and us having discussed such issues many times before, I knew where he was coming from as he said he just wanted to make sure that I wasn’t becoming consumed with our journey towards preparedness. Deep down I believe he already knew the answer, but he was just making sure. I quickly reassured him that I had been playing occasionally and that I absolutely had an ample supply of extra guitar strings put back for a rainy day! This brought an easy smile to his face because he knew I meant what I had said and we moved along.
Too often it seems that once people become aware of the reality that surrounds us every day and educate themselves on the advantages of becoming more prepared, they allow themselves to become overwhelmed. The thoughts that there is just so much to get done and that it needs to happen as soon as possible begin to dominate their conscience and they unwittingly become obsessed and begin to lose focus on the better things in life and (in most cases) the very things that motivated them to take steps to begin to prepare in the first place…their families and their friends and the other activities in life that bring them joy. What starts out as a well-intentioned activity becomes a burdening weight that can lead to such extreme disorders as paranoia and depression. This is not the case in every instance, but it does happen and more often than we may like to acknowledge. What’s worse is that there are people in the preparedness community that will tell you that if you’re not working on your readiness every day…that if you’re “wasting” your time, money and efforts on anything that isn’t preparedness related…that you are doing it wrong and (yes) that there is even something wrong with you.
We at Practical Tactical absolutely reject this notion and I am here to tell you that you don’t have to choose and that you can absolutely practice a preparedness lifestyle and still lead an amazing life. All it takes is developing a plan, setting priorities and taking your journey one day at a time.
As I mentioned above, we have been extremely busy this year and we have been very productive as a result, but we have also had a fantastic year full of fun, memory making experiences that we will cherish forever that we have been able to share with each other as well as our family and friends. We love sports = we ticked off a bucket list item and attended the NCAA Final Four basketball weekend, live music = we catch a concert out virtually every time one of our favorite artists comes around, being outdoors = we take walks and dust off our “athlete-selves” that we used to be whenever we feel like it, spending time with family and making time for ourselves = a week’s vacation with my brother and his family making memories with my six year old nephew and hanging out with my best friend on the planet and the greatest gift of my life, my wife Alice. Like I mentioned earlier referencing our plans over the 4th of July holiday, we have friends over all the time and they share in our lives abundantly. We live, laugh and love out loud for the world to see and we don’t apologize for it as we cherish every moment. We are grateful. So far in 2013, when it comes to enjoying life doing the things that make you happy, I think it’s safe to say we have accomplished those things in spades!
We have had an amazing year so far and we have still managed to make great strides in our preparedness. Best part is, the year is only half over!!! I really can’t wait to see what we get accomplished next…on both fronts! We have done it and you can too. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t.
1. Develop a personal preparedness plan for your situation
2. Set priorities within your plan and work towards them consistently
3. Preparedness is not a destination, it’s a journey. Make sure you take time to smell the roses along the way.
We know that there are real threats and challenges out there in this old world that we all must face every day, both in our personal lives and as a nation. We have accepted that fact and I would say we have even embraced it. We recognize that there is a very good chance that the next 20 years will not be the same as the last few decades, but we have decided to throw off the paralytic shackles of cognitive dissonance and lean into the coming change. That is why we work as hard as we do in our preparedness life. We are passionate about our relationships and our happiness. We live the life we love and we love the life we live and we take practical steps every day to strengthen our ability to carry that notion forward. We are readying ourselves for whatever may come, teaching and sharing what we know with others along the way. We do not live under a cloud of despair and we are not drowning in fear. We swim in the strengthening sunshine that is hope and are buoyed by a sense of purpose and accomplishment that we share as we build the life we choose going forward. We are free and we are happy.
You can absolutely practice a preparedness lifestyle and still lead an amazing life. We are proof of that. It is our hope that you will choose to make the effort required to join us in the pursuit, just remember to take some time to enjoy the journey.