Prepper Personality Traits

I have been thinking a lot lately about what kind of a personality it takes to be a prepper. I really wondered what it takes. Do I have the ability to be a prepper? Or am I just drawn to it because it is the fashionable?

Lately I’ve been seeing a billion political posts from certain people on my social media, complaining about the state of our country and the world. That’s fine. I have my views. However, that is not part of the topic today, as that just gets too heated for me. I read these posts from friends and family. They are worried about the direction things are going. For me, I’ve noticed a shift in my response to these posts since I’ve started prepping.

My first question has become, what are you doing to prepare for something that you’re worried about? How are you going to protect yourself and your family? It has very much become a different mindset for me. Going from complaining about something or listening to someone complain about something, to asking the important questions. How likely is it that X Y or Z could happen? What would you do? Do you even have the right mindset, or are you just someone who wants to complain and worry about it?

This shift in my response really started me thinking about what it takes to be a prepper, and I have made a list of the key personality traits and things that will help a prepper.

Organization. Organization is absolutely essential to prepping. I’ve seen many preppers who spend all of their time collecting and buying stuff. I’ve often wondered if prepping is a pretty word for a hoarder. Or, if it’s just one step behind being a hoarder. Well it’s really not… if you’re organized. Being organized can keep you safe. Rotating your food supplies, knowing what items you have and where they are. Knowing how to use them as well This is essential to being a good prepper.

Patience. A prepper’s work is never over. It is a constant mindset and you can’t ever be too relaxed, or think you know it all or have everything you could ever need. The truth is, you’ll never have everything you will need or have all the knowledge you need. If you stick with it and keep stocking up and learning, you will be far ahead of most people though. Prepping isn’t just a trip to the store and a bunch of stuff. It takes time to accumulate, and practice to use.

Willingness to Learn. Prepping is so much more than stocking up on stuff. You have to be willing to learn new skills. You don’t have to be a master at everything or a genius. Think about when your grandparents were your age. They were farmers, car mechanics, veterinarians, chefs, doctors, butchers, and so much more. All of these skills rolled into one person. Were they perfect or knew everything? Not even close. They had general knowledge of everything, but the expertise of none.

But, they had the basic skills down, so they rarely had to call in an “expert” unless something big happened. I want to strive to be like that. Where at least I have the basic skill set to take care of things myself. Start simple. Ask someone to teach you to change the oil in your car. Or trim your pet’s toenails, or try growing something in a pot on your porch. Start with basil this summer. Research things, and try it out. Be willing to fail as well. Failure means you try something different and learn.

Ability to Adapt. What happens when a plan fails? You adapt. Try something different. Or try doing it yourself. Learn and grow. Use it as an experience to help you in the future. Life doesn’t give us wisdom from a book. It comes from experience. Experience equals failures. We need to adapt and keep on moving. This would be where flexibility comes in as well. Nothing ever goes exactly the way we planned it. That is life right there. We have to be flexible and willing to adapt and keep on going.

Planning. You want to plan things out to the best of your ability. Nothing ever goes according to plans exactly, But without a plan to even try following there is just have chaos and panic. That way when things don’t follow that plan, you’re still prepared and you can respond accordingly. Planning is training for your mind. You’re training your mind to be ready in the event of an emergency. I wrote a post about fires recently, and one of the things I spoke about was exits from your home in the event of a fire.

Typically the front door would be the first exit we all think of. Ok, you’ve planned to do that. Now what happens if the front door is blocked by the fire? Where do you go then? Keep planning, and be a step ahead. Obviously the first plan of using the front door may not be viable. Go to the next plan. It’s the ability to think several steps ahead and be ready for things. This includes far more than home fires. You will want to plan everything as much as you can.

Drive. What drives you to prep? For some it would be fear, others to protect their loved ones, Others just want to be self-sufficient and live away from society. There are a ton of reasons why people prep. Think about why you are prepping, or even simply thinking about becoming a prepper. What is your motivation? There has to be some sort of driving force there to make you want to be successful at it, and keep moving forward. If there isn’t, prepping is probably not a lifestyle for you, to be perfectly honest.

Think of it like this… if you hate cooking, you wouldn’t open a restaurant, right? There is no drive or passion for owning your own restaurant and serving food. You’re pretty much doomed to failure. Think of prepping the same way. You need a drive, motivation, or passion to do it, and keep doing it. Without it, prepping is pointless. It’s hoarding at that point.

Introverted. Prepping requires some amount of secrecy and protecting your assets and skills. If everybody knew what you have, and they don’t have it in an emergency, guess where they’re going? They are all going to see you and demand your supplies. This can quite frankly get you killed. Some people are good and want to share their skills and help rebuild things if it ever came to that. Other people just want to take things because they were not prepared, unfortunately. It is good to keep things more of a secret, being very careful about who you trust and talk to. A listening ear can be a running mouth as well.

Prepping is a very complex skill set and isn’t for everybody these days. Think about if you are someone who has the ability to possess the personality traits that I talked about. Some people don’t have these traits. Some people do, but they don’t practice their skills. It is important to do this. Keep your mind moving and if you do start prepping, keep learning. We should all strive to learn new things everyday anyway. This is absolutely essential if you are a prepper.

I always recommend that everyone have the very basics that are essential in being prepared. My recommendation is start with a blackout box. Add in storing water. From there move onto food storage. With these items, at least you have the basics. From there, decide if being a prepper and continuing that journey is right for you.

33 thoughts on “Prepper Personality Traits”

  1. I am a prepping person myself admitting that… as a product reviewer, I receive a ton of items to review. And yes, I am messy but I try my best to organize the chaos. Unfortunately, naysayers keep pointing fingers and use sarcasm and insult to make fun of me….I try hard to ignore as I get to use and recurve items that they would never have the budget to buy!

    1. The Prepping Wife

      Those people who are busy making fun of you and other preppers will be the first ones running to us for help in an emergency. I just ignore them all. There are always haters out there That’s just fine with me. Let them, because I knew my family will be protected.

  2. I love how you give permission to those the lifestyle wouldn’t work for. For us, although I love to prep, we move every few years and the thought of packing that up, hauling it, paying for it to be hauled, and having to undo it again is enough to make my eyes buldge out of my head. But, I can take the same concepts and apply them small scale. 🙂 Thank you.

    1. The Prepping Wife

      I have to admit, I would have nightmares at the idea of moving around that often with my preps too! I’ve build my preps around my available space, the layout of my house, and so much more. So to adapt that and change it so many times, well, it makes me shudder. Kudos to you for taking the concept and applying it on a smaller scale though. Thank you so much for taking the time to read this article!

    2. I’m a planner! I love lists! I’ve got my blackout box set up thanks to you and working on my 72 hour supplies. It takes time and patience that’s for sure.

  3. Ok, I feel I am the same way, I need to get myself ready to get things done, whether it’s getting ready for an appt, getting ready to workout ( this can be getting my equipment, to getting my dogs ready and on leash to head out the door, or having a pre workout meal, etc)

    It looks like there was a photo of Central Park on your homepage in the snow…..are you in NYC? I’m on Long Island. Being prepared for the oncoming snow is important- from making sure I have enough food to having the snow plow ready to plow our driveways easily, to having ice melt for the driveways in case of possible ice (we have driveways that go up and if you drive up on ice you will slip and slide all over!) So I get your blog/ post totally……

    Having been in the military, always being prepared was instilled in everyone! You need to be prepared for the unexpected……What will you do if your in say Afganistan and a local pulls a gun on you……will you be prepared and be able to handle the situation properly? Legally? etc…..

    1. The Prepping Wife

      Hi, Pamela! I am not in NYC. I was there about 10 years ago and loved it though. It is a really fun place to visit. I am actually on the west coast, in the great rainy state of Oregon. We don’t get much in the way of bad weather here, but when we do, it is a little insane. Especially because very few drivers know how to handle icy roads or snow. I always try to make certain I’m more prepared during the winter months for anything, in case it is safer to just stay home.

      Being in the military is excellent training for being a prepper. Lol. So is any kind of first responder, really. So many of them actually do become preppers too, because they understand the need. It is very much a mindset, and training the mind. I talk about that in several posts, just getting people to think like that. My post on fire safety is exactly that, training your mind to respond. When the front door is blocked or in flames, where do you go next? Then keep going. What’s next? Even just thinking about stuff like that helps the mind.

      Someone once told me (in the gym) that the mind is our biggest muscle. Which I firmly believe is true, and training it is a huge aspect of prepping. It also works in the gym, actually. Little off topic, but telling yourself you’re going to do something really does help to be successful in doing it.

  4. This is an awesome post! Thanks for sharing! In away we are all preppers. When something is on sale we stock up or we practice for a fire with our children. We are always prepping for some event in our lives. My Great Grandparents, Grandparents, parents were preppers too. I remember as a child sitting around shelling peas, butter beans and snapping great beans. We were freezing veggies for the winter. So we are prepping whether we know it or not.

  5. This is an awesome post! I am not a prepper but it is interesting to me. I can definitely understand why people do it even if there are a thousand different reasons to. I love the advice and I’m glad I’ve subscribed to the newsletter!

    1. The Prepping Wife

      Thanks, Heath! We definitely write very different blogs, but I’m enjoying reading yours as well.

  6. I’m definitely the sort of prepper that’s just one step away from a hoarder. It’s why I have a full basement 🙂 I’ve always had sort of a prepper mindset though. I was always that kid with the bag full of everything you might need in any situation.

    1. I admit that I’m not a prepper, although I admire those of you who are. I just am not organized enough. I have many of the necessary items and plans, but they aren’t all together in an easily accessible place. You encourage me to think about these things and to become better prepared for emergency situations. Thank you.

  7. I am admittedly an extremely prepared and organized person yet I have been saying for years that I need to do emergency prepping more. From a simple go bag to things like food storage as you exaplin are easy ways for me to get started. I live on LI so we are never really concerned about losing drinking water as there is an abundance but you just never know. I also consider myself a bit of a MacGyver so I know I coudl constrcyt what i need in an emergency if I am prepared for it. My wife continually says she woudl be the first one to go in the event somethign happened as she doesnt have the head for it. 🙂 Great post.

  8. Prepping is a new concept for me. I appreciate how you explained your shift in mindset from complaining about something or listening to someone complain about something, to asking the important questions. This basic advice can be applied to all areas of life. Each individual person can identify what is important to them (whether be prepared or something else) and finding actionable steps to get there.

  9. I never gave a thought to running my household to be prepared for emergencies when I lived in the UK, beyond always having candles and matches for power cuts and tins of baked beans. Moving to New Zealand where earth quakes are common has made me have a contingency plan and a box of emergency stuff just in case. Better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have it!

  10. You do make a good point about not advertising that you are a prepper to those in your immediate vicinity, in case of emergency when you would have lots of company! This post has definitely provided me with much food for thought in the event of something going wrong. I am also thinking of it in terms of being outdoors in nature, where I tend to spend a lot of my time. Great post, thank you.

  11. I am a very organised person by nature and love planning, though it has occurred to me since reading your post that I have not really planned anything out in the event of an emergency! Something to add to my to-do list!

  12. I am an obsessive planner, an introverted perfectionist with a serious obsessive knack for organization and to have things ready before they are even needed. So I prep months and weeks ahead for everything. My friends make fun of me by saying that I am fully prepped for the “end of the world apocalypse” and that “if it were to happen today, I won’t be taken by surprise since I had already planned for it…” I don’t know how true those are, but I do love planning ahead. But one thing I still struggle with is the ability to adjust when things don’t go as planned.

  13. I have always said that if you can’t bend to life, then life will break you. Some of the awesome tips you listed here should be memorized by everyone in case of the day it might be needed.

  14. I’m definitely not a prepper, even though I wish I was at somethings. I’ve always wanted to do meal prepping but I get so overwhelmed. I do stock up on items if they are on a sale, but I hate clutter. So if I don’t have the space, I won’t get it. I live in New England and the every time a huge snow storm is coming, people rush to buy milk and bread. I never really understood why everyone wipes out an entire aisle of bread but if a true emergency came on, my family and I would be screwed.

    1. The Prepping Wife

      I am right there with you, Kelly! I can’t stand clutter either. That is why I wrote a post about pantry organization to help others be better organized without clutter. I know my space and what it can hold, and it is so important to stick to that amount and not over buy anything. That always feels like such a waste of money to me. Hopefully that helps you get started! If you have questions, feel free to reach out to me and I’ll help get you started.

  15. I have the skills and somewhat motivation to be a prepper. I did quite a bit of prepping back in 1998 and 1999 in preparation for the Y2K bug. I did believe there was a possibility that things would go awry, if only for a short while. My husband was patient and understanding even though he did not believe there was anything at all to worry about. I would like to do some emergency prepping and you have motivated me to look into that. I’ll be checking out more of your articles starting with your Blackout Box to get me started.

    1. The Prepping Wife

      My husband was not remotely on board with my prepping when I first started either! We actually didn’t talk about it for a while, I just sort of did it and he smiled and nodded. Then came a time or two where it really came in handy. Me being me, always pointed out those moments by saying, this is exactly what I prepare for and why I did it. Now that he’s experienced those times, it makes perfect sense to him and he’s a lot more on board with it than in the beginning. I couldn’t force him to become a prepper, so I just sat back and waited for the teaching opportunities to present themselves.

  16. I think I hold a lot of these qualities but patience is something that although I work on frequently, it’s not a strength.

  17. Subhashish Roy

    I try to be well prepared for the unknown and planning has always been my strength having been in the corporate world in senior positions for many years. However I do empathize the circumstances in which you are need to be a prepper be it safety, security or unforeseen circumstances. Nice post and thoughts

  18. So true, there totally is a certain mindset behind prepping! I am going to be moving in with my bf in June so between the two of us we might as well start creating a safety net of supplies for ourselves. It always pays to be prepared

  19. I’m actually not a prepped at all. We focus on a very minimal lifestyle, but our neighbors are super preppers not just with food but also ammunition and they even have a steal bunker.

  20. I hadn’t been familiar with the concept of the prepper before reading your blog. I like your approach, how you refuse to worry and complain. Rather, you choose to get prepared for what life may throw at us, and hone basic life skills.

  21. blair villanueva

    This is the first time I heard about this traits. I am curious what’s mine 🙂

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