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For $15 You Can Build The Perfect Backup Air Conditioner July 22, 2017

Everyone has the same pressing need in the summertime. They all want to stay cool, which is a cinch for the most part. In the modern world, keeping the temperature low indoors is usually as easy as a click of a button or a turn of the knob.

However, everyone should have some kind of backup plan for their AC needs. You never know when the power will go out, or your air conditioner will break. That may sound like a trivial matter. It’s the sort of issue that makes snide people groan and say, “1st world problems, am I right?” But you should take the heat seriously, because hundreds of Americans die from heat related causes every year. So you should always have an alternative for your standard AC unit.

Fortunately, those alternatives don’t have to be expensive. In fact, you might already have everything you need to make an air conditioner, lying around your home. Check out this DIY cooler, which consists of nothing more than a fan, a styrofoam ice chest, and a piece of PVC pipe. It can even be powered by a solar panel.

Stay frosty!

Joshua Krause was born and raised in the Bay Area. He is a writer and researcher focused on principles of self-sufficiency and liberty at Ready Nutrition. You can follow Joshua’s work at our Facebook page or on his personal Twitter.

Joshua’s website is Strange Danger

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published July 22nd, 2017
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How to Stay Sane When You’re All Alone in a Survival Situation July 21, 2017

When most people imagine various survival scenarios that they could find themselves in, many of those scenarios include isolation. That’s not surprising, considering that many of the survival stories we hear about in the media, involve people who escaped the hazards of the wilderness all by themselves. Those stories are often the most harrowing and interesting.

But when people consider prepping for those scenarios, they usually don’t think about some of the difficulties that come with surviving by yourself. I’m not talking about the difficulties that are associated with pulling off challenging tasks without the help of a friend. I’m talking about the crushing mental anguish that is inevitable when you haven’t seen another person for days or weeks.

The average person probably doesn’t appreciate just how important social interaction is for their well-being. They know it’s important to some degree, but they don’t realize that it’s vital. It’s just as important for your health as food, water, and shelter. Maybe you don’t believe me. You think that you’re an introverted loner who doesn’t need people. Or maybe when you think about an apocalyptic scenario, you have romantic notions of being some lone wolf badass who can take care of himself (it’s almost always a “he” who thinks that).

But consider this. In prison, how do guards punish unruly prisoners when all other forms of discipline have failed? They throw them in solitary confinement for days, weeks, and sometimes even years, where their only contact with other people is through letters (if they’re lucky). In a place that is brimming with murderers, liars, thieves, gangs, drug pushers, and rapists, the absolute worst punishment you can inflict on a prisoner, is to separate them from those dangerous criminals.

Let that sink in.

Social isolation can be crippling. It can cause depression and anxiety, and can deplete your self-worth. When it’s coupled with a lack of stimuli, (like say, from hunkering down in a shelter for days or weeks) it can cause insomnia, paranoia, poor impulse control, aggression, hallucinations, and memory loss. In other words, it causes you to behave in ways that are not conducive to survival.

So if you’re going to prep for any survival situation, you have to prep for the possibility that you’ll be on your own for a long period of time. You have to figure out how you’ll stay sane when you’re your own company. And how do you do that? Take it from prisoners who have actually been locked up in solitary confinement for long periods of time.

Wrongly convicted inmate Shujaa Graham found solace in routine while he was in solitary. Graham, who’s now 62, spent three years in solitary on death row after he was framed for murdering a prison guard.

“I kept myself occupied,” he said. “I programmed myself.” He woke up at 5 a.m. every day and did exercises like jumping jacks and push-ups. Then he’d sponge himself off in his sink. Later in the day Graham went into a deep meditative state, pretending to visit his mom and other family members.

Vietnam prisoner of war Tom Moe didn’t see, hear, or talk to another American for months during his captivity, according his account in Notre Dame Magazine.

During his time as a POW, he made sure his mind was always occupied. He designed and built 10 houses in his mind, he wrote. And he constantly made lists — ticking off candy bars, countries, and the capitals of those countries.

And in most accounts of people who have survived solitary confinement, you’ll find similar themes. They use their imaginations to challenge themselves, they meditate, they find some way to express themselves through writing or drawing, and they exercise.

They maintain a strict routine, which is very important since isolation makes you feel like you’ve lost control of your life. A routine establishes that feeling again. And perhaps more importantly, a lot of prisoners plan for the future. Not only would that make good use of your time in a survival situation, but again, it helps you feel like you have control again.

Make no mistake, social isolation is no joke. It can utterly destroy the mind. If you don’t take any measures to exercise your mind and body in a survival situation that leaves you all alone, then nothing else will keep you alive.

Joshua Krause was born and raised in the Bay Area. He is a writer and researcher focused on principles of self-sufficiency and liberty at Ready Nutrition. You can follow Joshua’s work at our Facebook page or on his personal Twitter.

Joshua’s website is Strange Danger

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published July 21st, 2017
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Your Ancestors Had Some Hard Core Survival Instincts… This is How You Can Get Back to Your Roots July 17, 2017

One of the biggest drawbacks we suffer from as a species is our lack of focus on our immediate environment utilizing all of our senses.  I just recently penned a piece on the importance of “reconnecting” with the olfactory sense.  When we were hunter-gatherers and even after human settlements such as towns and villages were established thousands of years ago…our ancestors used all of their senses.  All of them.

We can still do it now.  It only takes practice.  This doesn’t mean that you have to dive down into the prone and sniff a trail out.  Although you can!  Yes, you can!  Your nose has that capability if you train it, as I pointed out in the other article.  But take a look at the title for a second.  Do you know that precept of maintaining things in balance?  You need to train all of your senses, and allow each of them to complement and supplement one another.  Let’s discuss it!

Increase Your Survival Instincts With These Tips

  1. Eyes:  You already know how to see things.  Now think of components of sight that you may have either been unaware of or not really given much thought to.  How about peripheral vision?  That is the type of vision where you see things from the corners of your eyes.  You have oculomotor muscles that you need to train and condition to see in such a manner.  How about in levels of low light?  Train your eyes to adjust to the conditions around you.  Motion?  Our eyes key in motion before anything else.  Right behind that comes contrast in color. There are two types of targets: point and area.  Point targets involve one individual thing, and area a group of things/multiple items conglomerated in one location.  Train your eyes to see these things and differentiate between them.
  2. Ears: Most of us have selective hearing.  We hear what we want to hear and “drown out” the background sounds/noise.  What we need to do is differentiate between things and allow the range of our hearing to be utilized.  Watch a young cat.  Their ears are always moving, at the slightest sound.  The older cat is different: he hears more selectively and doesn’t lurch or flinch at every car engine or step outside the house.  Train yourself to identify as a “matter of fact” and correlate what needs to be reacted to or to be acted upon.  The best training you can receive is to go into the woods by yourself, take a seat, stay still, and shut up.  You will be amazed by what you will hear, and what you will learn.  What you thought was quiet?  There’s a great cacophony of sounds…all you need to do is listen to them.
  3. Smell: I covered this in the other article, but in a nutshell, you need to train your nose to do what it can do.  Studies show that dogs do not possess olfactory powers much greater than man.  The difference is that dogs use their sense of smell, and we have a “mental block” about using it to do anything other than smell perfume on our significant other or smell dinner as we come home.  Develop by being aware and using it…compare and contrast, and experiment with different aromas.
  4. Touch: Be able to differentiate between things…light touch and firm touch.  Be able to do tasks, such as disassemble your firearm blindfolded or in the dark, group the different parts, reassemble it, and perform a “functions” check.  Touch and rote memory are the keys.  Feel different plant in the woods, and know what they are by feel.  Yes, complement this with smell, when applicable.  It takes practice.
  5. Taste: This one you must take greater care than with most of the other senses, as taste can lead to poisoning or a “hurt” tongue if the surface of something (such as a plant) is rough.  Be advised: something with botulism or another foodborne illness does not necessarily reveal the presence of microbes by taste!  It is the least relied on sense because it is something that does not necessarily decide a choice…it is a sense that usually is affected as the result of a choice.

So, what is all of this good for?  It’s good for a lot of different things.  You will be able to move through your environment with more and deeper awareness of your surroundings and things in them.  You will alert yourself to dangers more readily.  It is an art that all of us have the ability to perform.  We’re “hard-wired” for it.  We just need to reconnect with those abilities.  Just takes practice, and practice may not make perfect but it helps to perfectUse your senses and train not just to use them…but to listen to the information they are conveying to you!  JJ out!

Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.

Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.

Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published July 17th, 2017
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