By Michael T. Snyder
It is becoming increasingly apparent that the U.S. economy is heading for complete and total disaster. State and local governments across the nation are uncontrollably bleeding red ink. The federal government has accumulated the largest debt in world history. Every year we buy hundreds of billions of dollars more from the rest of the world than they buy from us. That means that we are getting hundreds of billions of dollars poorer as a nation every single year. Meanwhile, thousands of factories and millions of jobs continue to be sent overseas as American cities turn into post-industrial wastelands. Incomes are down, unemployment remains at depressingly high levels and very few of our politicians seem to have any idea how to fix things. Yes, things are really, really bad. So what are some things that we can all be doing to prepare for the coming financial apocalypse?
Well, the truth is that we all need to start becoming less dependent on “the system”. If the economy does completely fall apart at some point, your employer is probably not going to take care of you. Neither is the federal government – just look at what happened in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. In the end, you are going to have to take care of yourself and your family.
So are you ready?
Now is the time to prepare. If you wait until things totally fall apart it will be far too late.
The following are 12 simple things that you can start doing right now to prepare for the coming financial apocalypse….
#1 Become Less Dependent On Your Job
Many people define a job as the state of being “just over broke”. The truth is that it is incredibly difficult to become financially independent working for someone else. Now, the truth is that most Americans would not be able to survive without a job, but what would you do if someday you suddenly lost your job during a financial apocalypse? Now is the time to start investigating alternate sources of income and different ways to build wealth. Today it takes the average unemployed American over 33 weeks to find a job. You may not always be able to count on being able to get a good job, and the economy is only going to get worse over the long-term. All of us should be operating under the assumption that any jobs we now have will someday be taken away.
#2 Get Out Of Debt
Some people disagree with this, but unless society degenerates into complete chaos or we experience Weimar Republic-type hyperinflation, the truth is that your debts are going to continue to hang over you wherever you go. Getting out of debt can be completely and totally liberating. It will give you much more freedom and will make you far less dependent on your job. In fact, it looks like a lot of Americans are already moving in this direction. It was recently announced that 8 million Americans have stopped using their credit cards over the past year. Why not join them? When things start really falling apart and it is incredibly difficult for anyone to get a job, the last thing you want is a huge amount of debt hanging over your head.
#3 Reduce Expenses
For decades, most Americans have been living far beyond their means. In the future, times are going to be really tough and we are all going to have to learn to tighten our belts. Do you and your family waste money right now? If you can eliminate that, you can live on a smaller income and you will have more money to invest in the things that are really going to matter.
#4 Purchase Land
Real estate is still priced too high in most areas of the United States, but the truth is that you don’t want to wait forever to get your hands on a piece of land. If a “financial apocalypse” does happen, you don’t want to be stuck in a big city with no place to go. You always want to have somewhere that you can “bug out” to. The U.S. real estate market is continuing to struggle right now, so hopefully prices will come down even more and there will be some really great deals available over the next couple of years.
#5 Learn To Grow Food
Another reason why you want to purchase some land is so that you will have somewhere to grow food if you need to. 100 years ago almost all Americans knew how to grow their own food, and most of them also knew how to raise farm animals. Today, relatively few Americans have those skills. A great way to begin is by starting your own “survival garden”. If you are not already doing this, then why not start this upcoming year?
#6 Find A Reliable Source Of Water
Water is going to become a very, very valuable resource in the years to come. It will be absolutely key for you and your family to have a dependable source of clean drinking water. If you do not have water you will not be able to survive for long. In the event of an economic meltdown, basic services such as power and water may not be there. So be certain that you and your family have an alternate source of water to depend upon.
#7 Explore Alternative Energy Sources
This point is similar to the one above. Do you think that if a financial apocalypse happens that you will always be able to depend on the power company? The truth is that there is a good reason why so many Americans have been trying to go “off the grid”. Without power, life gets really difficult very quickly. But if you are generating your own power then you won’t have to worry about that.
#8 Store Supplies
In the event of a major disaster or emergency, store shelves are going to empty really fast. If supplies are disrupted on a permanent basis, you may have to get by on what you already have in your home. So do you and your family have enough warm clothes, personal hygiene products and medical supplies to last for an extended period of time? Hopefully your local stores will always be able to supply what you need, but we need to prepare as if that is not guaranteed.
#9 Protect Your Assets With Gold And Silver
The way that the Federal Reserve is abusing the U.S. dollar, it is only a matter of time before rampant inflation sets in. Even now, the U.S. dollar has already been seriously declining and precious metals like gold and silver have been shooting into the stratosphere. In the future, your paper money may not buy much for you at all, but if you have some gold or silver coins you can always exchange them for the things that you are going to need.
#10 Learn Self-Defense
Did you see what happened at stores from coast to coast this past Black Friday? Americans were literally trampling one another just to get their hands on some cheap foreign-made plastic crap. So what do you think is going to happen once these people have been without food for two or three days? Now is the time to think about how you will defend your home and your family from crazed looters. It is not a fun thing to think about, but unfortunately we are heading for times that will not always be pretty.
#11 Keep Yourself Fit
As Americans, we live such “cushy” lives. But when times get hard things will not be so cushy. In fact, the years ahead are likely to demand quite a bit of physical activity. So keep yourself in good physical condition right now. In the future you will be very glad that you did.
#12 Make Friends
It is really, really hard to “survive” by yourself. Those who will thrive the most in the future are those who will have a community that they can depend on. Americans are always at their best when they work together. Don’t be afraid to reach out to your family and friends. In the times ahead the world will be a very cold place, and a little love and compassion will go a long way.