Skip to comments.The Psychology of a Survivalist
Posted on 12/29/2010 4:23:58 PM PST by FromLori
What makes a person a survivalist? What mental attributes and worldview does a survivalist have that allows him or her to continue striving over and above others that may be more intelligent, have more book sense, or be better equipped to survive than anyone else? It all comes down to a few words.
Yes, I know the whole premise of the article is about the psychology of a survivalist, so logically the mind is the place well start. But the mind is more than just a collection of knowledge or common sense ideas that help us to live. Its the ability to take something from thought to conception, to adapt to the environment, and to maintain a healthy outlook when everything seems hopeless. It is attitude as well as ability, and as the Bible says, as a man thinks, so he is.
These attributes are taken from Cody Lundins book 98.6 Degrees and makes for some interesting thoughts on how personality affects outcome, and particularly how your thoughts and feelings will affect your individual chances of surviving.
Staying Cool Under Pressure
Face itif youre a hot head or emotionally reactive, your chances of surviving any disastrous situation are diminished from the start. There are times when youre going to have to FORCE your mind and body to stop, think, observe, plan and then act.
STOP sit down and chill, get your emotions and body in check so youll have better clarity of mind and response to a situation.
THINK assess your situation.
OBSERVE take a reading of your surroundings, the obstacles you face, and the options you may have. Give yourself the time to respond analytically to the situation, using your brain and senses instead of your emotions.
PLAN now that you have all the data you need and a sense of the situation, decide on a plan of action and then act.
Adapt and Improvise
Adaptation is one of the major keys to survival. Its planning for all eventualities possible and having a response in mind. Its facing the scenario you never considered, and utilizing the things you have to force a positive conclusion. Its an attitude of responding, assessing, and rethinking a plan as needed.
The ability to make decisions is paramount in any survival scenario. Vacillating between one choice and another is how you over-think a situation to the point you are useless. Make a decision and then accept responsibility for that decision. There can be no finger-pointing in a survival situation and no one must be afraid of failure. All decisions can be rethought in hindsight. The important thing is that, after a decision is made, continuous adaptation and improvisation is applied.
The Ability to Toughen Up
Lets face ita survival condition is not a walk in the park. You are going to be taxed emotionally, spiritually, and physically. You will be challenged more than you ever thought possible. There are two things that will make your chances of coming through bottom out: the desire for creature comforts and complacency.
The desire for creature comforts can make you act irrationally and compromise your survival plan, putting you and those trusting you at risk. A complacent attitude will not afford you the quick wittedness that you need to assess and confront a disaster situation. When you are thrust into survival mode, youre just going to have to put your big girl panties on and deal. Bottom line.
The Ability to Intuit and Read Other People
Your observation and reasoning skills will need to extend to being able to read other people and intuit their thoughts and emotions. This isnt some mental telepathy, ESP junk science. This is reading signs and subtle signals that others give off, and being able to interpret those signs accurately. Learn to think from anothers standpoint so that you can better gauge anticipated reactions that might endanger you or your loved ones.
Maintain Hope But Prepare
You cannot live your life day in and day out in fear. Thats not living. Being prepared does not negate hope in the future. It simply strategizes and prepares for an eventuality that may or may not come. Due diligence to survival prep is not foolish. Your skills may be the only thing that keeps you and others alive. Disaster comes in a moment. Remember Katrina. Remember Haiti. Remember the tornados and floods and mudslides and ice and snow that come in an instant and devastate sections of the country each year. Remember and then prepare.
Maintaining your sense of humor is a must. Laughing releases endorphins in your brain that actually help your body cope with mental and physical stress, along with relieving pain, reducing blood pressure, and mitigating headaches and chronic illnesses. People in all walks of life cope by utilizing humor, even if its a morbid gallows humor or laughing at the insanity or foolishness in which they find themselves.
In the midst of it all, if you are so inclined, try to hold on to faith. We are told that God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of love, power and a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7) We are told to be diligent and watchful, but in the end we can only control a limited amount of what goes on. Once we reach that point where nothing we do will have an effect on the outcome of an event, then is the time to sit back and put the future in Gods hands.
Incorporating these psychological attributes into your survival preparedness plans will help you come through any disaster situation you might face. In fact, successful incorporation of these traits may be the difference between life and death for you and your loved ones.
Interesting related? story about Ashton Kutcher...
“On a massive world-crushing event happening in his lifetime: It wont take very much, Im telling you. It will not take much for people to hit the panic button.
The amount of convenience that people rely on based on electricity alone. You start taking out electricity and satellites, and people are going to lose their noodle. People dont have maps anymore. People use their iPhones or GPS systems, so if theres no electricity, nobody has maps.
On losing power last Christmas: It was 20 below zero. I got my guns out. We made a fire. We went to the grocery store, and the doors were open because theyre all electronic. People were rolling in and out, clearing out the shelves.
On the training he puts his body through: Ashton enjoys runs at Runyon Canyon near his Los Angeles home, as well as hour of hot Bikram yoga. He is also learning Krav Maga, which is a combat technique used by the Israeli army and by special elite forces around the world.”
Ashton’s workout is in “Men’s Fitness”
“You cannot live your life day in and day out in fear. Thats not living. Being prepared does not negate hope in the future. It simply strategizes and prepares for an eventuality that may or may not come.”
My old tagline was “Ever Vigilant. Never Fearful”. Being prepared can diminish the fear. Of course if one’s fear is overwhelming, you will never be prepared enough.
One more thing - taking notes while watching that new Zombie show is a good idea too!
I don’t know I was just surprised that he has a gun and is learning Israeli type combat techniques in preparation for a societal breakdown.
“The amount of convenience that people rely on based on electricity alone. You start taking out electricity and satellites, and people are going to lose their noodle. People dont have maps anymore. People use their iPhones or GPS systems, so if theres no electricity, nobody has maps.
Have a great big book of maps. Some bought, some homebrew. Been a delivery driver for too many years to go without. Should probably make more, they always come in handy.
As for the -20 without power, dealt with that at least once a year where I grew up. We had at least 5 years worth of split wood, and if we didn’t split more in August.
What I need for better survival:
1, more matches. I have candles and other light sources, but not enough matches. They always come in handy.
2, more gas in my car. It’s low, should be higher just in case I need to be somewhere quickly. Prolly have to wait until payday.
Should prolly start working on the panic box in the car. Need to put some non-perishables, and extra gas.
Any recommendation on guns? I’m not at the point where this becomes next on my list yet. I’ve got the permit and the training, I just don’t own one at this point in time.
“I dont know I was just surprised that he has a gun and is learning Israeli type combat techniques in preparation for a societal breakdown.”
Ashton is probably the best example of why it takes someone who is brilliant to play dumb so well as he does with Kelso.
It isnt being fast or even accurate that counts. Its being willing. I found out early on that most men, regardless of cause or need, arent willing. Theyll draw a breath or bat an eye before theyll pull a trigger. I wont.John Wayne
Last year, we got snowed in and had no power for a week. We were up in running within a short period of time. Generator going, coffee brewing, hamburgers cooking on the Coleman stove.
It took our neighbors a while to get their acts together. None of them had a generator. Luckily, they all had heat of some sort - either propane or wood. The first day, we were delivering coffee to folks, until they could make their own. God forbid someone might suffer caffiene withdrawls.
There’s something to being survivalists.
So, he got his guns ‘out’, built a fire ( girlscoutjuice, no doubt ), and went to the grocery store....
Actually that is what I expect from the left....
A real survivalist has his spare generators stored in a Faraday cage so that they will work after an EMP event. ;-)
You should just run to Ashton Kutcher’s House, he will save you.... after they get back from WholeFoods and CVS...
LOL! Thanks for the tip!
Well now wasn’t that a catty remark.
Seems you know more about his life than I do. Interesting!
Nah. We have a real old one that won't be affected by an EMP.
So, will Bruce be able to kick his butt?
Food, shelter, fuel, defense-of-life, communication, like-minded individuals, perpetuation-of-life, enhancement-of-life BUMP!
>>What makes a person a survivalist?<<
Knowing how to be self reliant.
And being willing to do it.
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