Prepper fight or flight response

Fight or Flight?
Preppers plan for both scenarios

Will you bug out or bunker in and fight?
Preppers need to know when to bug in and when to bug out. Read
this article to understand the fight or flight response and how it
applies to preppers to help you make this important decision.
Below is everything you need to know about the fight or flight

Fight or Flight Response for Preppers
It's a basic instinct for both man and animal: the instant a being
realizes that danger is imminent, there is a "flight or fight"
decision to make. It's an acute stress response. In the world of
prepping, fighting is "bugging in" and fleeing is "bugging out."

Imagine a lion who has stalked a zebra. The lion is the predator
forcing the zebra to a flight or fight response:

  • The zebra is "bugging in" if it darts about the herd in
    camouflage to confuse the lion  in hiding with the stripes of
    other zebras.

  • The zebra is "bugging out" if it flees. And we've all seen
    footage of what happens to the unlucky zebra that flees or
    gets caught off the edge of the others.

Taking a cue from nature, the hunter usually has the edge in
striking by the element of surprise; however, the hunted may
have a "home field advantage." Knowing the lay of the land
certainly provides an advantage and a reason for bugging in;
however, sometimes the best strategy is a combined response.
Think of a rat who flees when it feels threatened. If cornered
however, it will fight. Assessing the situation like a rat is the
ultimate survival response.

Will you be the Hunter or the Hunted?
In uncertain times, one becomes either the hunter or the hunted.
The being that flees often becomes the hunted; however, fleeing
doesn't always mean changing locale. The being that flees might
choose camouflage to go undetected (hiding) or playing dead as
a response to escaping capture. Both are survival mechanisms.

Fires, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes and other natural occurrences
also can trigger a flight or fight response. One may choose to
fight or flee nature. Perhaps you will choose to escape natures
fury or perhaps be forced to stay because there is no vehicle for
escape. That's why Happy Preppers are prepared for both
scenarios. Most have a plan to "bug in" for an extended amount
of time, and then when the timing is right they will 'bug out."

Bugging in (and fighting).
Bugging in is having the "homefield advantage." To defend the
homestead and fight or hide, rather than to flee is
bugging in. If
the world outside your home is without water, electricity and
food, there will be dangerous and irrational people roaming the
streets, including gangs. A prepper must be prepared to survive
by bugging in. The decision to bug in is often easier knowing that
you have an arsenal of supplies at hand. One thing's for sure,
having the
proper supply of food in an emergency will enable
Happy Preppers to function at optimal levels to better defend
their estate of supplies, while the masses in desperation pilfer,
loot and lunge risking their lives for food. The looters will exert
too much energy finding their next meal, making them weaker
upon confrontation.

Naturally there will come a time when a Happy Prepper realizes
that having a plan to fight is necessary. For those who resist
firearms, there are some alternatives. In fact, people who have
firearms should also have other defense mechanisms and skills in
place. For example: Pepper Spray is always an option, and Martial
Arts is a viable
self defense for Prepper women. Why not take up
archery or learn how to shoot rocks with a sling shot. These are
prepper skills and can be quite entertaining as well. When you're
bugging in you will also have weapons available in your kitchen,
garage or shed. "Don't make a plan of fighting: that is a very
good way to loose your teeth," as Bruce Lee once said in a
movie. Use your mind to be formless:
be water, my friend.

Other tactics for bugging in might include:

  • Hiding: Looking like a homeless person is a camouflage (or
    "bugging in") tactic that some may use to blend in with
    society while they retrieve a secret supply of food.

  • Distracting: Throwing useless items on the lawn to show
    gangs that the property has already been looted, could
    provide essential and sufficient distraction while a family is
    thriving safely inside in a safe room or bunker.

  • Safeguarding: Having the forethought to invest in body
    armor, such as the affordable bullet-proof vest above, can
    enhance preparedness on the defensive strategy.

Bugging out (fleeing)
To flee the homestead instead of fight is bugging out. When you
bug out, you bring all the essential gear possible. Plan your bug
out vehicle as though you will never return home; however,
always have hope that you will return. Lessons learned from
Hurricane Katrina are that FEMA camps won't save you. Plenty of
people died while doing what was instructed of them: heading to
camp. For this reason, heading to camp should be a last resort.
Your bug out plan needs to be a solo effort: you'll need to plan a
bug out bag, bug out vehicle and alternatives and more to take
responsibility for your own life in a survival situation.

For your bug out plan, consider reading "Bug Out: The Complete
Plan for Escaping a Catastrophic Disaster Before It's Too Late,"
by Scott B. Williams. In it the author explains why by the time
official evacuation starts, it's already too late, which is why it's
important to create an escape plan for where to go and also to
know how to get there, while finding food, water and other
necessities outside of civilization.

Bug out bag
You can buy bug out bags or make them yourself. Consider
reading "Build the Perfect Bug Out Bag: Your 72-Hour Disaster
Survival Kit," by Creek Stewart, left. In it, the author shows you
how to create a self-contained disaster preparedness kit to help
you survive your journey from ground zero to a safer location. A
survival expert, Creek Stewart details everything you need to
gather for 72 hours of water, food, protection, shelter, survival
tools, and more. Check his video when you click the book link,
above left.  The tactical bugout bag, left, is an ideal start for
making your own bug out bag. If you live in earthquake territory,
you can buy a ready made bug out bag above left.

Bug out car or truck
Steer clear from flashy cars, such as the bright yellow truck
pictured right which will attract too much attention. However, do
equip your truck with a bed top to help contain your Prepper gear
and or a truck tent. Camouflage netting is an easy way to help
disguise your vehicle.

Bug out Bike
Mobility is the key to prepper survival. While many Advanced
Preppers have elaborate schemes to bug out with vehicles
ranging from ATVs to school buses, these Preppers often fail to
prepare their bug out plan for an electromagnetic pulse scenario
(EMP). Happy Preppers know that an EMP is a very real threat,
because it would render all vehicles useless. The simple escape
considering a bicycle as a bug out vehicle. Two bug out bikes to
consider are the adult tricycle can easily pack gear, and a folding
bike is a great addition to pack in the car. Bottom right, you'll
find the sturdy adult three speed tricycle ships for free. Adult
trikes are hard to find in local stores because there is simply not
enough profit margin or need for this specialty vehicle. They are
popular with Preppers, though! For the advanced Prepper, there's
the fun surrey bike, pictured in the lower right hand corner with a
red and white striped canopy. This deluxe touring bike with seats
for up to 3 adults and 2 children.

  • Prepper's Tip: Equip your bug out bike with a trailer even if
    you don't have young kids. It will be an excellent place to
    stash equipment and will help you go under the radar.
    Remember, you'll also need a coupler attachment to affix the
    trailer to your bug out bike.

Holding your Ground
Advanced Preppers will enjoy reading "Holding your Ground." This
instructional guide, pictured immediate left, teaches military
tactics using historical examples to create a defensible barrier to
your home without affecting your property's value or appearance.
Even if you already have a personal defense system in place to
guard your food and water, "Holding your Ground," will teach you
how to configure your home, train your team and properly equip
any location for defense by hiding items in plain sight and
positioning supplies.

Other tactics for bugging in might include:

  • Camouflaging a "bug out" vehicle. No one may expect an
    ordinary sedan to be packed to the hilt with supplies, but
    they might want to pirate a van, for example. In such a
    case, an ordinary car is a camouflaged bug out vehicle. It
    may be wise to stash a camouflage tarp or netting with the

  • Moving quietly to minimize detection is another "bugging
    out" type move. Some Preppers choose to bug out after two
    weeks or two months after a major incident, which is long
    after the masses have tried to bug out. They may walk or
    ride a bike to their bug out vehicle, which might be a boat
    miles away. Of course there's always the chance that the
    vehicle will be looted in that time, a Prepper always has a
    "Plan B."

  • Defending peaceably. Consider the peaceable self defense
    tactics of diffusing, avoiding, hiding, disguising, surprising or
    retreating before you draw your guns. It just may save your
    life. Happy Preppers think beyond punching, kicking and
    using a gun. They learn how to think. And that's the most
    important lesson in staying safe. Learn how to avoid
    dangerous situations, and how to handle things if you can't
    avoid the confrontation before you draw a weapon.

Whether you're bugging in or bugging out, it's important to
prepare a proper defense. While Preppers can certainly enroll in
professional survival training courses, there are a variety of skills
you can attain in prepping, including taking a martial arts class,
reading a tactical defense book or a book on self-defense
psychology, or getting streetwise with a self defense class. The
training is up to you. Go with your interests and always expand
on your skills. You might be able to avoid using a weapon

Self defense tips:

1. Someone have you in a hold?
Learn to use the elbow. It's the strongest part of your body!

2. Have to give up your bag?
You have a bugout bag (or purse) that someone wants? If you
have no defense handy and your life is at stake, throw the bag in
the opposite direction of your path to run away!

3. Running from a gun?
Flight from a gun should be in a zig-zag pattern. If you run a
straight line the shooter has more opportunity to get you.

4. Not ready to own a gun yet?
Get a BB gun! Right is a Smith & Wesson replica of one of the
newest Smith & Wesson designs. An element of realism is added
with a 19-shot drop out BB magazine.  This air pistol is a BB
repeater powered by one 12g CO2 cylinder that hides in the grip
of the BB pistol. A home invader won't have time to think about
whether or not it's real, and you'll still have some power to
defend yourself.

Happy endings...
Know in advance what you'll do. When you have an emergency
plan, you're ahead of the curb. Remember to practice your skills.
Practice, practice, practice. Bruce Lee said it best: "I fear not the
man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who
has practiced one kick 10,000 times."

Related articles...

Popular prepping articles...

Prepare to live happily ever after with us at - the emergency
preparedness Web site of prepping, survival, homesteading, and self-reliance.
Prepper's Tarp
Quake bug out bag
Bug out truck
Bug out
Military Poncho
Fight or Flight
Happy Preppers site for survivalists + preppers |  prepping and survival articles
Datrex bars
------------------------------------------------- Revised 03/13/2021
(C) Copyright  2012-2021 by All rights reserved. The site happily targets concerned
citizens who are self-reliant survivalists, preppers and homesteaders with original content on survival following
societal collapse. You may link to our site, but
you may NOT reproduce any part of our content, or store our
content in any retrieval system to represent it as your own. Further, you may not transmit content in any other
form or by any means, including (but not limited to) electronic, photocopy, mechanical, or recording without
written consent. makes no warranties. is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising
program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to,, or Amazon is a great place to buy emergency supplies. In other words, we
recommend prepping gear sold on
Amazon. It's a great place to shop.

Get prepared! Read more emergency preparedness information on our home page.

article on the fight or flight response has been archived by It's been saved more than
30 times between July 31, 2012 and March 13, 2021. This helps protect our copyright.

Please do not plagiarize. We NEVER give permission to steal our copy. Linking is okay and encouraged.

privacy policy
Patriotic Prepping
nine reasons to love a Big Berkey
Martial law - a practical guide to surviving
How to prepare for a cyber attack
Build the perfect bugout bag
Prepper Deal Alerts Check
daily deals for prepping
gear and food storage.
How to survive Radiation fallout
Are fish antibiotics safe for humans?
how to get free groceries on Amazon
Sealed Foods to last a lifetime
Ten nuke supplies to own ~ supplies necessary to survive nuclear fallout
Indoor emergency cooking options
Chocolate for prepping and survival
Energy chew review
Best cans for your food storage
Is it worth it to build a Faraday cage
Bugging in ~ hunker dow and survive an emergency situation
Fight or flight
How to use body language to see if someone is lying
How hope keeps you alive
Survival Psychology
gab social media profile for happypreppers