Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Excuse #4 - Getting Prepared Means Having To Focus On Negative Situations

Negativity is all around us.  All you have to do is turn on the nightly news to figure that out.  Being upset about situations we have no control over is the cultural norm.  Reality TV makes every little detail into high drama, and 24 hour news channels beat every subject to death.  You almost need to live in a cave to avoid it all.

Unfortunately, when we prepare we are dealing with yet another thing that can be viewed as negative.

Today's blog is an ongoing discussion into reasons we hate to get prepared.  The original blog can be found here and you can find links to each of the reasons below. 
  1. Preparing is expensive.
  2. Preparation takes time.
  3. Being prepared takes emotional energy.
  4. Getting prepared means I have to focus on negative situations.
  5. There is the chance I will never need to prepare at all.
When it comes time to prepare many of us find the prospect of focusing on yet another negative thing overwhelming.  Emergencies aren't usually pleasant, because if they were we would call them 'unexpected celebrations' instead.  Here is a quick and dirty list of things we prepare for:
  1. Natural Disasters (can we say Hurricane Irene anyone?)
  2. Medical Emergencies
  3. Fire
  4. Theft
  5. Evacuation
  6. Death
I can honestly say I wouldn't enjoy anything on that list!  It is a little overwhelming and scary.  Images from the news come to mind, and horrible stories from friends and neighbors come back in vivid detail.  Ack!

Here is the good news, preparation gives you back some of your power in each situation.  Yes, it is true.  Just to prove it, let's look at what you gain by focusing on each negative thing on our list.

Natural Disasters - While you have no control of when the hurricane hits, or when the mud slides down the hill, you can be prepared.  Having emergency supplies stored and ready to use will allow you to avoid the rush on stores, the limited supplies and the emotion involved when you think you may have to do without.  Having a plan and resources gives you power and confidence, so one negative is now a way to take charge.

Medical Emergencies - I am not a fan of these.  I would much rather be cold that sick.  When medical stuff comes up you never feel good, and dealing with an emergency when you feel icky is never pleasant.  Prepare for medical emergencies by recording histories, documenting prescriptions and listing surgeries.  This is the information your medical team needs to treat you. Taking the time to research this information reduces the risks of giving an incomplete medical history.  It takes extra strain off of you, and lets you be sick without having to be a walking medical report.

Fire - My family has personal experience with this one.  I remember the day we got the call my Nana's house burnt down.  Once we were sure she was okay I started asking about important treasures that were inside her home.  Most of it was lost, but not all.  Taking the time to think about your 'treasures' and taking steps to protect them is empowering.  While you may not care about the clothes in your closet, you may care about Grandma's china or your birth certificate.  (Please really should care about the paperwork...just say'n) After the fact, it is a little late, so consider this a 'burning' priority. (Couldn't resist!)

Theft - I can't begin to tell you how much I dislike people who steal.  I have a confession to make.  When I was really young I took a sticker out of my friends desk to see if she would notice.  She didn't, and then I felt too embarrassed to give it back. The sticker seemed to stare at me and condemn me every time I saw it. Even after the school year was out I still was haunted by this sticker, so I got on my bike and rode to her house to confess.  When I got there I realized her family had moved and I was forced to keep the offending sticker.  Whenever I think about theft I get the same sinking feeling I had while holding that sticker years ago.  Preparing for theft by taking pictures, documenting purchases, and properly storing valuables is a responsible thing to do.  Hopefully you will never have a 'friend' take any of your stickers, but being prepared gives you back a lot of power.

Evacuation - They say there is no place like home.  I would agree, unless of course your home is in the path of a hurricane, rising flood waters, or wildfires.  Being prepared to leave is an emotional, but solid idea.  Knowing where to go takes the stress out of last minute plans.  Having fuel, supplies and food makes the trip easier.  Having an evacuation kit ensures you leave with what you need.  You may not get to choose when you have to leave, but you can decide how prepared you will be.

Death - This is a biggie, as there are so many decisions to be made after a death.  If you have particular wishes, then documenting them is important.  Death is very emotional, so making the hard choices ahead of time frees up time and energy for personal emotions.  While death is inevitable, the uncertainty many people feel can be avoided.

So there you go...a nice list of how to take your power back from negative situations.  You may not be able to avoid them, but you can put yourself in a better position to deal with them.

No comments:

Post a Comment