Why Veterans Make Excellent Preppers!

Why veterans make good preppers

When it comes to being prepared, veterans have a variety of unique skills and a mindset forged in the struggle of military service. It’s not just about learning to follow orders and doing difficult things but about cultivating a blend of discipline, adaptability, and problem-solving abilities that can make all the difference when the going gets tough. 

That’s not to say that all veterans are the second coming of Audie Murphy and Chesty Puller. However, the nature of the military instills many traits that fit well into the world of self-reliance, resilience, and preparedness. With that, let’s dive into what makes many veterans excellent preppers. 

1. The Power of Discipline and Adaptability

In the military, discipline isn’t just about marching, standing at attention, and saluting; it’s about ingraining habits that promote order, attention to detail, and precision during difficult times. It’s the unwavering commitment to doing what needs to be done, even when it’s uncomfortable or challenging.

The discipline engrained in the military lends itself to adaptability and the ability to effectively pivot in constantly changing circumstances. In the military, plans often change on a dime, and you’ve got to adjust and overcome. Being highly adaptable offers a considerable advantage in the world of preparedness, where flexibility and the ability to make quick, effective decisions can save the day—and lives.

Soldiers using teamwork to raise a flag

2. Teamwork: The Heartbeat of Success

From day one in the military, everyone is taught that teamwork is the heartbeat of everything. The importance of working seamlessly with others, depending on and supporting one another, can’t be overstated. Teamwork isn’t just about bonding and getting along but about working together and overcoming challenges that would otherwise be insurmountable. 

3. Mental Toughness

When it comes to self-reliance and resilience, veterans have an invisible weapon honed and ready to deploy—mental toughness. This remarkable trait, forged under the heat of military service, is like a well-tempered blade, prepared to slice through any obstacles life places in front of veterans.

Staying Cool Under Fire

One of the most outstanding features of veterans is their uncanny ability to remain calm, cool, and collected when the world around them is burning down. From the very beginning of their service, veterans are trained and have it engrained into them to handle bullets flying, explosions echoing, and chaos boiling over around them.

It’s not about being fearless; it’s about controlling and operating despite the fear. It’s about taking a deep breath when things go haywire, re-focusing on the situation, and clearing one’s mind even when the heart is racing like a sports car. That’s the mental toughness veterans can bring to the table.

Dancing with Stress and Uncertainty

Veterans know and accept an undeniable fact—that life is unpredictable. The military teaches you to navigate the turbulent waters of stress and uncertainty effectively and precisely. As a veteran, you learn to adapt when plans crumble, to find solutions when problems multiply, and to keep moving forward, even when the path is uncertain.

Tales of Tenacity

Every veteran has a story to tell—a story of facing extreme difficulty and emerging stronger on the other side. These tales of tenacity serve as a beacon of hope and a reminder that you can overcome the situation no matter how tough it is to do so. It’s this can-do attitude that embodies the veteran mindset. 

4. Resourcefulness: Making the Most of What You Have

In the world of preparedness, resourcefulness is like a superpower, and veterans have a high degree of it. You see, during our time in the military, we learned to take what we had and turn it into what we needed. It’s all about making the most of available resources and adapting on the fly.

Military Resourcefulness: The Art of Making Do

When living out of a rucksack, we often found ourselves in situations where we had to make do with what was on hand. Whether patching up equipment in the field or improvising shelter, we became masters of “making do with what you have.” It’s about thinking outside the box and finding creative solutions when the going gets tough.

5. Problem-Solving and Critical Thinking

While serving in the military, veterans become masters of tackling puzzles, and those skills are pure gold when it comes to preparedness. So, here’s a little insight into why veterans are like problem-solving wizards and how that can totally work for you:

Battle-Hardened Brainpower

When someone has been through the military grind, you’re wired for solving problems and thinking critically. It’s like having a secret superpower that kicks in when things get tough. 

Veterans know how to break down complex situations into bite-sized pieces. Whether assessing a tactical situation or planning a route, veterans can usually figure out how to make it happen. 

In the end, almost every veteran has a story about when their equipment went south in the middle of nowhere. They didn’t panic and instead got creative. That’s the thing—veterans thrive on finding clever solutions when things are FUBAR.

Veteran enjoying time with his family

6. Planning and Preparedness: The Military Way

Planning and preparedness are as essential as your boots, rations, and gig lines in the military. Here’s the deal: veterans are trained to anticipate and mitigate risks. They don’t hope for the best—they prepare for the worst. 

Risk Anticipation

Military training instills the ability to see the bigger picture. Veterans are taught to assess potential threats and vulnerabilities on the battlefield and in everyday life. It’s like a mental radar constantly scanning for trouble. It’s a skill that translates perfectly for self-reliance. As the skill increases, people will more easily spot potential hazards and vulnerabilities in their surroundings, which is the first step to crafting a solid preparedness plan.

Risk Mitigation

In the military, people don’t just stop at spotting risks; they take action to mitigate them. That’s where preparedness plans come into play. Imagine your plan as your battle strategy. It’s your playbook for when things go sideways. Veterans know that having a well-thought-out plan is the basis for success. It can mean the difference between a chaotic mess and control success.

7. Leadership Skills

Veterans, with their unique blend of experiences and training, often bring invaluable leadership skills to the table when it comes to preparedness. These skills are not just impressive on a battlefield—they are equally vital in safeguarding your family or community during emergencies.

During an emergency, a leader can be the difference-maker. Veterans have been groomed to step up, take charge, and lead with conviction during times of crisis. It’s part of their DNA. They provide direction, inspire others, and ensure that everyone’s efforts are coordinated towards a common goal—safety and resilience. 

In addition to being a leader and decision-maker—they’re also a mentor, empowering others with knowledge and confidence. As a veteran, you can help your family and community become more self-reliant and resilient.

The Bottom Line on Why Veterans Make Excellent Preppers

The bottom line is that veterans are often exceptionally well-suited for preparedness and self-reliance due to the diverse skills and mindsets developed through their military service. Their experience has taught them discipline, adaptability, teamwork, mental toughness, resourcefulness, and problem-solving abilities, which are crucial in handling emergencies and unpredictable situations. These qualities, tested during the challenges of military service, make veterans a valuable resource when it comes to successfully preparing for the worst.

What other aspects of the veteran and experience do you feel help with preparedness? Tell us in the comments below!

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Why Veterans Make Excellent Preppers!

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Brian Duff

Brian's preparedness career began at sixteen and included professional roles as a lifeguard, firefighter, paramedic, Special Operations team leader with the 3rd Ranger Battalion, Diplomatic Protection Specialist, and international security director. He's managed medical clinics in Afghanistan and Uzbekistan, provided high-threat diplomatic protection in Iraq and Pakistan, advised a rebel army in Africa, oversaw U.S. embassy security in Baghdad, and directed a premiere tactical medicine training facility. Brian is an expert in Security, Crisis Management, and Preparedness Mindset and hosts the Mind4Survival podcast. He holds a bachelor's degree in Security Management and an MBA in Information Technology Management.

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