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The Beginners Guide to Self-Reliance in 2021

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Now more than ever we live in a world where we can’t rely on others for our basic needs. I think over the last few years we’ve seen what can happen when people are caught off guard by an emergency situation (toilet paper hoarding). It is very evident that most of us were totally unprepared and realized too late how self-reliance could have prevented a lot of stress during the events of 2020.

I myself have experienced difficult times and what it’s like to not have enough resources to meet my family’s needs. My husband and I learned from those times and swore to never be in that situation again. We have spent many years learning new skills and finding resources to ensure we would not be caught off guard by the next tragedy to hit our lives. Being more self-reliant helped us to get through the bulk of 2020 with little to no stress. And this is why I want to help others learn how to weather any future disasters that may be lurking around the corner.

What is Self-reliance?

Self-reliance is defined as relying on your own abilities and resources for your own well-being rather than relying on others for your needs. Living a self-reliant life is achieved by creating a home and life style where you don’t have to rely on the government or stores for your own security and basic needs.

There are a lot of misconceptions about what it means to live self-reliant. You have to have tons of money, you have to become one of those crazy preppers, you can’t survive without two people having full-time jobs in today’s world, raising your own food takes too much time and work. I assure you these ideas are absolutely not true.

  • You can actually find a lot of preparedness gear and items for rather cheap if you know where to look.
  • My grandparents lived through the depression with little to no money and were very self-reliant. They were even happy.
  • Most preppers are very down-to-earth and look at prepping as just another form of insurance.
  • If you make many things yourself instead of buying you will save a ton of money. Much of what we buy today are considered luxury items and if you set better priorities you’d be surprised on how little income you can live on.
  • Raising your own food can be pretty simple if you research easier garden methods like BTE. And nothing is wrong with a little hard work.

How to Get Started Living a Self-reliant Life 

Getting started with self-reliant living doesn’t really require buying things, in fact you may be getting rid of things you don’t need. It really is all about learning new skills or improving your resources. Taking it step-by-step is the best method to get started so you don’t get overwhelmed.

I would start with food. Considering as I’m writing this we are experiencing severe inflation and beginning to see the signs of food shortages everywhere. Learn to make more things from scratch, slowly put away food in a prepper’s pantry, learn to garden (most important). Even if you don’t have a lot of space you can grow some crops and learn to can it.

Find ways to cut back on spending and put a significant amount away for emergencies. Get on a budget. And find a way to pay off credit cards and get rid of them.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Find local resources for things that you commonly buy from big stores.
  • Learn to sew.
  • Upcycle old things you have laying around.
  • Make your own cleaners for the home
  • Learn how to preserve food long-term
  • Buy food in bulk
  • Learn to cook/bake from scratch

Wherever you decide to start integrating more self-reliance into your everyday life, start now. It’s never too late.

Tips for Success in Self-reliance 

Being successful with self-reliant living really is up to you. Never stop trying new things. If you’re not good at a certain skill, find someone in your community who is and trade with them. ie: You make awesome tomato sauce but don’t have chickens for eggs, see if you can trade with someone.

The less you have to rely on grocery stores, big box stores, or the government for your families security the more successful you’ll be. Just take it one step-at-a-time.

Common Questions/FAQ About Self-reliance

  • How many acres do you need to be self-sufficient?
    • The truth is you can be self-sufficient on less than an acre. There are ways to grow enough food to feed a family with very little space. This video gives a great example of my friend doing just that.
  • Can you grow enough food to feed a family?
    • Depending on how big your family is, yes you can. It is easier for smaller families of course, but bigger families can still grow enough food to do quite well. Melissa K. Norris covers this very topic on her blog.
  • Why should I be self-reliant?
    • Without trying to sound like an alarmist, it is very apparent that our country’s financial situation is looking pretty bleak. We are already seeing insane prices on basic food products and gas. It won’t be too long before we see it get worse before it gets better. Being self-reliant is just a great way to protect your family from an uncertain future.
  • What are some examples of being self-reliant?
    • Growing your own food/raising small livestock like chickens or pigs
    • Cooking meals from scratch
    • Practice preparedness
    • Getting out of debt and managing your money better
    • Creating an emergency fund
    • Being responsible for your family’s well-being
    • Creating a home that is a sanctuary away from the chaos of the world
    • Teaching your children personal accountability
    • Homeschooling
    • Relying more on God

The Last Thing You Need to Know About Self-reliance

It is never too late to start living a more self-reliant life. Take it little by little. Learn one new skill a month, buy a few extra items every time you go grocery shopping, or start a garden with your family (you can plant many things at different times of the year).

It is so important during the current times to be ready for any possibility and being ready for the unknown can sometimes be a matter of survival. I know all too well what can happen when you’re unprepared and have to rely on others or the government for you’re well being. hint: it never ends well.

Share this post with someone you know is looking for information on where to start with self-reliance.

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