Survival psychology

Survival Psychology
Prepping and the Psychology of Survival

What separates survivors from those who don't make it? People
who respond quickly, remain clear in head, focused in their task,
and have a stress free attitude, have a distinct advantage when
it comes to survival. This attitude enables better intuition and
judgment; whereas an overwhelmed mind just can't think
logically and as a result leads to poor decisions.  

The psychological consequences of hunger and thirst; cold or
heat; crowding or isolation; fatigue or sleep deprivation are
among the things you will face without a plan to combat the
hardships or avert the dangers. Indeed, having the proper
mindset could save your life, which is why survival planning is
so important.

What is survival planning? Survival planning is much more than
stocking the necessary food, water, and security items. It also
goes beyond a positive mental attitude because good and
happy thoughts alone can't help you find your way out of a
disaster. Survival planning is a psychological first-aid. It is a
matter of having hope and determination to survive and having
a logical plan to go along with it.

When you prepare, you dramatically increase your chances for
survival. Make a plan to survive by absorbing the seven rules of
survival psychology. This read just may save your life.

Seven Lessons of Survival Psychology
Here are the seven survival psychology rules (a prepper's list of
urban survival skills):

Survival Psychology rule #1: Respond quickly, don't
People who respond quickly and remain clear-headed have a
distinct advantage when it comes to survival. In short, every
second counts when it comes to survival! The Nike, "Just do it,"
advertising campaign probably stems from sage Disney advice:

  • "The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing."
    – Walt Disney

Know that you are built with a
fight or flight response. Failure
to react is the most important factor to consider. Preppers have
the advantage because they know how to react when a
catastrophic situation will present itself. They will not be the
deer stuck in the headlights, because they have, in their mind,
run a thousand scenarios and know how to respond. They have
a plan. Others will not be so lucky. They will head to FEMA
camps and will huddle in fear. Most will not survive the end of
the world as we know it. So what is your survival plan?

    Your survival plan is this:
  1. Respond quickly to do anything it takes to stay alive.
  2. Make 100% of your energy devoted to survival and
    have the will to live.
  3. Never quit!

Survival Psychology Rule #2: Do things right the
first time.
The key to doing things right, as all preppers know, is
preparation. What you do today will help your chances for
survival tomorrow. The only way to do things right, is to
practice them.

If you have a
gas mask, then learn without a doubt how to put
it on in thirty seconds or less. You must think about what to do
when you're not under stress. Create your plan today and store
it away as needed. Remain clear in your head and stay focused
on your task.

Survival Psychology Rule #3: Plan an escape route.
Think through your actions with mental imagery if you were in a
scenario. Any preparation as mundane as possible could save
your life.

Never live in an hotel room or apartment below the first sixth
floor. Most fire ladders extend only to the sixth floor. You
should also know the route out of a building as if you were blind
as smoke could block your vision. Walk the evacuation route
before disaster strikes with your eyes closed, even while at a
hotel or a friends home.

  • Always look for cross roads while walking.
  • Give your car a buffer to get around the cars ahead of you.
  • Find your life raft on a ferry before you find your seat.
  • Count seats to the exit on a plane before you place your
    baggage in the overhead compartments.
  • Hold regular fire drills with your family, including specifics
    on how to deploy the escape ladder (as this is something
    kids won't know how to do without instruction).

Survival Psychology Rule #4: Never underestimate
the danger.
Life poses imminent danger as some day you will die; however,
you can postpone the imminent threat with advanced planning.
In fires, many people underestimate the severity of fires. They
think they have more time than they actually do. This is often
called "friendly fire syndrome." The best example of "friendly
fire syndrome" was evident on Sept. 11, 2001. Unfortunately,
many of those who died went to the bathroom, filed away
papers, shut down their computers and locked their cabinets or
finishing their meals, instead of heading for the fire exits. They
also got together to try to figure out what to do. They huddled
together in groups, and called their families to get news.
Instead they should have spent their time evacuating.

Survival Psychology Rule #5: Ignore peer pressure!
People ignore danger because of peer pressure. This is the thing
that Preppers face constantly with their non-prepping family
members, friends and acquaintances who think they are crazy
for prepping.

Peer pressure is able to exert its power in more ways than
meets the eye. In short, people don't want to look silly. They
don't want to risk their reputation, and yet they are willing to
risk their life! It makes no sense until you think of it this way.
Most alarms are false, aren't' they? Why get up and get out of
building if it's likely to be false. This is the non-prepper
mentality. A prepper would get our of the building immediately
and without much thought. They likely have already planned
their escape route in their mind many times.

Survival Psychology Rule #6: Have confidence to
take control!
Be "in charge'! Your preparedness will count for nothing unless
you put your plans into action. The person who survives is the
one who has self confidence. Having self confidence will help
you deal with the situation at hand. Need to survive and tell
yourself specifically what you need to do. Remember, that what
you do could really make the difference. You are responsible for
your life. You can affect your own destiny.

Anyone who has taken a CPR class knows that the only thing
separating you from the others is your confidence in knowing
what to do. A person trained in CPR will command someone else
to call 911. They will take charge of the situation to evaluate
the life condition. They will also ask permission for help from
the victim or guardian. That is because they are the person in
control. You can't help someone who doesn't want to be helped.
For many, there is a sense of relief when someone else is in
charge. Survivors are "in charge" and the lead the situation at

Survival Psychology Rule #7: Adopt a positive
It has been proven through the holocaust survivors that those
who had hope made it through. Have hope to survive. Be happy
that you've prepared. Surely, the happiest people on earth will
be the ones who've prepared should the unthinkable happen.
You can thrive with a positive mental attitude!

More Survival Psychology Resources:

  • How does your brain impact your survival chances in the
    wilderness? Author Cristen Conger tackles this question
    and offers some advice in a free article on howstuffworks.
    com. "When you realize you've entered into a survival
    situation, resist panic and take a few minutes to plan," the
    author says. This excellent article reviews the mechanics of
    your body reacting to stress including the negative effects
    of stress hormones (adrenaline and cortisol), as well as the
    importance of a having positive mental attitude because
    without it our bodies and our brain wear down faster. It's a
    quick read and well worth the time.

  • Survival Psychology Book: Hawkes Special Forces Survival
    Handbook: Mykel Hawke's Special Forces Survival
    Handbook, right, isn't a survival psychology book, but it
    has an excellent chapter on the subject of hunger. Packed
    with useful tips for Preppers, though it's an outdoor
    survival guide, you'll find the survival psychology section
    fascinating. This book retails for $15, but on Amazon, left,
    it's around $10 and available with FREE super saver
    shipping. You can be prepared in the event you run out of
    gas in the desert, get snowed in or your boat capsized.
    Discover shelter and water, food and fire, tools and
    medicine, navigation and signaling and getting out alive.

Happy endings...
Remember to always have hope! If you've lost hope, you've lost
the battle. Knowing this basic survival strategy will have you
using your last wit to survive whatever comes your way and live
happily ever after.

Related articles...

More prepping articles...

Survival is in your mind. Open your mind...

What's your strategy for holding your ground? Write us!

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