Introduction to a Warrior Mindset
In the prepper community, mindset is not to be taken lightly and, at times, the topic may not be given the level of attention it requires amongst the fury to concentrate on more tangible items. While no doubt food storage, water, and medical gear are, in fact, part of mindset, alone these items do not provide the solid foundation from which to build upon. Think of mindset as the protective bubble base you aim to build. Know your protective bubble covers many areas and be ever mindful that it may need to change rapidly. You may have the best home defense system with ample supplies and a great plan, yet what if you need to move? You can spend time and money preparing but without the proper mindset, that is a warrior mindset, all may be for naught. If reading this you find yourself saying, “Hell yeah bring it!” as you are ready mentally then you are way ahead of the game; however, certainly there is always room for continued learning and growth. Think for a moment about the most elite Special Operations military units that continue to train and attend civilian outsourced schools to increase their already vast knowledge base… you should do the same. If you cannot afford to attend schools, pick up a book, as you can always read. And, while the wealth of information on the Internet is limitless, you need to select your sources carefully, as most everyone knows simply because it’s on the Internet does not make it true.
This article represents the first in a long series to prime your mental pump about mindset. In my daily work as an instructor and throughout my articles, I make it a point to include mindset as a theme. Additionally, every training evolution in which I participate, I incorporate a form of reality-based training (to be discussed in later articles). Warrior mindset not only prepares you for the bad things this world may deliver but also assists through the good times in daily life. The bottom line is that mindset is not an option… unless, of course, your aim is to make up the flock of sheep that lives unaware of the wolves that stalk them. Further, mindset is a necessity for success in all aspects of daily life. And, most pointedly, for when things go south, you need to be physically, logistical, and mentally prepared for it.
One critical skill in every aspect of life, from managing quotidian events to surviving catastrophic occurrences, is the ability to think clearly, a major facet of a warrior mindset. And, as an athlete, a police officer, a fireman or a truck driver all need to have the correct mindset to operate effectively in their chosen profession, so do you as a prepper. Frankly put, your brain is the most important factor in the preparedness equation and, ultimately, to your survival.
So, let’s start with a simple understanding of mindset. While numerous words describe mindset, from situational and environmental awareness, to mental fortitude, they essentially drill down to the same thing, an attitude. After consulting several sources for definitions, the correlation of words focus on the mental process and suggest several concepts, thinking, attitude, opinions, inclinations, tendency, and habits presumed to be positive attributes that refer to mindset. The antonyms of these words reflect the areas we want to avoid in life and our preparation for the unknown, such as unthinking, antipathy, and aversion, as our caveman brothers probably grunted, “Mindset good and anything less, bad”.
In this introduction, the first thing to recognize is you will not rise to the occasion, you can only perform to the level for which you have trained and prepared. We all know there is no magical prepper fairy ready to swoop over to sprinkle magic fairy dust to help overcome a situation… right? Only your warrior mindset and preparation through training will save the day (you could say that’s the real-life prepper fairy). Mindset starts now, with an eternal examination of who you are. What are your capabilities today and, more importantly, what are your vulnerabilities? Once established, growth comes from this starting point. A fair assessment begins with a S.W.O.T. analysis, taken from the business arena but perfectly applied for use as a prepper.
S.W.O.T. S-Strengths, W- Weakness, O-Opportunities and T-Threats
- Strengths are where you are today. What have you done to date and how ready are you for an event now? You can also add to this category former military or law enforcement experience, cognitive experiences to define your current knowledge base? Did you grow up in the city or in the country? Both have different advantages in certain situations. Did you grow up hunting and fishing, participate in Boy Scouts or in other clubs like summer camps that provide a good sense of the outdoors and basic survival skills? Basically, this area identifies, just what are your skills? While we all arrive with different skill sets, remember you can increase your knowledge, so at this point it is only necessary to identify the strengths.
- Weakness is a bad word that I do not like to use, as you can improve on any weak area you deem requires work. It is important to start where you are and this is the reason it is remains entitled weakness. Weak areas could include the opposite of the strengths, maybe you never played outside as a kid, you have never killed an animal, fished, built a fire, changed a flat tire… the list goes on and on. Mark this area carefully and think critically about it. You must think unconventionally on this one and consider everything life may throw at you. I do not mention changing tires lightly, as many rely on roadside assistance where help is a cell call away. When I protected some of the brightest intelligence officers in the world hailing from the best ivy schools in the Nation the first thing I had to teach was basic life skills. And, how to change a tire was one such skill. So, think outside the box when you complete this section.
- Opportunities are just that, what opportunity do you have or can you make to better yourself and your family. If you have extra money to attend schools, choose wisely to get the best quality for your investment. You deserve the best and know there are many schools more than happy to take your hard-earned money to leave you with little to show for it besides a logo emblazoned shirt and hat. If you cannot afford to attend schools there is a wealth of knowledge to be gathered from sites such as this. Other areas of the Internet help but be warned there is more bad data than good so choose wisely and go with trusted sites that have professionals who look to help you not just take your money. Also, free advice is just that, free, and must be vetted carefully.
- Threats also require an unconventional thought process. Examine what you look to prevent in life and how are you preparing to protect you and your family. What is your perceived threat and how are you managing that threat? Your location is a great place to start, as in where do you live? Do you live in a rural or in an urban area? What is the perceived threat against such area? Are you living on a coastal area prone to hurricanes? Or do you live somewhere in the Midwest prone to tornados? Flood plain areas are also of great concern. Do you live in a major urban center and want to prepare an escape in case the need arises? Or are you fully preparing for a major attack by a foreign government on the United States? All situations require a threat analysis to assist with the development of a warrior mindset.
In conclusion, this article provides a challenge to examine your current warrior mindset. Take time to look over these four areas and make your personal SWOT analysis as it is an easy, valuable tool to get started or to increase your already existing base. Future articles will provide more details of these areas with the sole purpose to help you be self-sufficient in analyzing your needs and building that protective bubble with a strong foundation of a successful warrior mindset ‘cause ain’t no prepper fairy gonna do it for you.