No one is predicting 2012 to be an uplifting year, economically. All major financial analysts predict stagnation at best, while others warn of likely doom and gloom as the dollar continues to become less desirable around the world.
In 2010, China and Russia agreed to stop trading together in dollars and Japan agreed to do the same with China just last week. Moves like that coming from these major economic players only can spell doom for those who rely on the strength of the dollar.
With commodities like food and oil still trading in weakening dollars, it puts further pressure on the soaring prices of these essentials. All signs seem to indicate that the cost of living in dollar-based economies will likely rise dramatically in 2012 as well.
Additionally, just as Western populations find themselves broke and without jobs, their governments are also on the brink of bankruptcy and are reducing domestic spending, while continuing to print endless gobs of money for fraudulent banks and endless wars. The notion of reversing this trend is not promising.
Here are 10 things to do in 2012 that will help you survive economic fluctuations and even full-blown collapse:
1. Learn New Skills: The best insurance you can take out for an economic downturn is learning new skills. Skills to produce something beautiful or beneficial to humans is the only true form of wealth that no one can take from you. Examples of skills to survive economic collapse can be organic gardening, food storage, food preparation, animal husbandry, construction, sewing, candle and soap making, first aid and natural medicine, hunting and fishing, alternative energy, mechanics, and anything else that fills basic human necessity. Many other skills are viable as well should society not deteriorate completely such as writing, communicating, organizing, software coding, etc. Note: These skills are beneficial to have regardless of economic conditions.
2. Improve Your Health: Yes, this is everyone’s cliche New Year’s resolution. But in times of great uncertainty, especially economically, taking care of your health is ultra important. When each week may be make-or-break financially, very few can afford to lose a week or more of productivity because of illness. Additionally, great stress is likely facing everyone in 2012. Thus, full spectrum health of body, mind and spirit will be vital to survive and thrive in tumultuous times.
3. Store Backup Food: The overall global food price index increased by 33% from January 2010 to January 2011. Did your income rise by that much in 2011? Did the value of your investments increase by that much in 2011? If not, storing extra food is far more practical than maintaining a savings or investment account. And in terms of withstanding a possible collapse of the dollar or economy in general, you’ll be in much better shape than if your resources are in a banking institution.
4. Create a How-To Library: There is no way to learn all of the things that may be useful in times of severe economic distress. Many of us rely on the Internet as an immediately accessible library of how-to information. However, if something were to happen to Internet access in 2012, which is clearly under threat of censorship and control, it’s important to build your own personal library of useful how-to knowledge; books, ebooks, videos etc. Get an external hard drive and start downloading books and videos that may prove priceless in times of need.
5. Start a Side Business: Waiting for the government or anyone to “create” jobs is futile and foolish. The West has clearly entered an age of prolonged economic downturn where manufacturing jobs are unlikely to return with any significance. It’s time to focus on creating something for yourself, whether you’re currently employed or not. Learn to forage for deals and small earnings. Learn to create. Start a small side business and build the foundation for an additional stream of income with something you’re passionate about. Start a blog, write a book, teach or take a class — anything that you can sink your teeth into.
6. Gather Trade-able Goods: If things go from bad to worse, besides food, there are many things that will be valuable to have stored up. First consider your personal needs and overbuy those items. Things like toothbrushes, toothpaste, soap, wet wipes, baking soda (countless uses), Q-tips, first aid products, alcohol, and medicine. There are also several survival goods that you should backstock like; water filters, fuel, lighters, lighter fluid, seeds, weapons, common ammunition, batteries, and hand tools. These are regularly used in daily life and won’t ever go to waste, but they also have great trade value should times get tough. All of these items can be picked up very inexpensively if you keep your eye on deals and buy in bulk.
7. Build Community Alliances: Everyone needs a supporting tribe when times get tough. Inform your family and friends of your plans to prep for the worst and the new business ventures you’re engaged in. Encourage them to get involved with you in any capacity that makes sense. Seek others in your community already doing these things and collaborate with them. Support local businesses and local food cooperatives. Go to your town hall or city council meetings and suggest community activities that increase self-sufficiency of the area to cushion any disruption.
8. Alternative Energy: Having any source of alternative energy is just plain smart for any circumstance. A backup generator, whether solar-powered or gas, is imperative for those who live in cold climates (along with a wood stove or fireplace) prone to electric outages in the winter. But imagine if the lights go out for an extended period of time. Solar hot water, a solar-powered chest freezer, a solar oven and a small generator will provide a high level of self-reliance for energy with minimal investment.
9. Water Purification: Clean water is so vital to your health and survival that you should acquire several ways to purify water. First, before disaster strikes, test your water now. You may be surprised to discover that disaster or not, your water may already be contaminated with countless toxins including sanctioned additives like fluoride. There are several affordable options for turning unhealthy water into crisp fresh water from portable hand-pumped units, table-top setups, faucet attachments, to pills and bleach drops. It’s recommended to have more than one option, so research and find the best that you can afford that suits your needs.
10. Love & Appreciate: One of the most important intangible things you can do to survive 2012 is to love and appreciate more. Make it a daily action item: express love to your friends, family, neighbors, and even strangers. What you put out into the world is what you’ll get in return. Appreciate what you do have every day. Don’t be disappointed because others may have more, because there are always others with far less. Your genuine appreciation for the little things will attract the bigger things you need and desire.