Passport to Preparedness

Imagine you're headed on a fun and greatly anticipated journey. Maybe you're excited, enthralled by every turn in the road and every bump along the highway. You would consider yourself well prepared, with your itinerary in hand and your passport ready. You know just what landmarks you want to see and how to reach them. You know exactly what your expenses will be, and you've got the funds you need to get you there.

But maybe you're nothing like that. Maybe you're dreading this trip. Perhaps you are even unsure of what your final destination should be. As a matter of fact, you are only certain of one thing--the fact that you don't have what you need to get there.

What should you pack? You don't even know if there are landmarks you should be visiting. This being your first trip, you are unaware of the wrong turns to which you may be susceptible. The road ahead looks desolate and intimidating to an inexperienced traveler like yourself. You feel lost before you even take that first step.

You might think the first scenario is preparation for a trip to Europe, and that the next scenario plays out in preparation for a dreaded business trip. Actually, it's neither. Both scenarios could describe your current journey to Preparedness.

I know what you're thinking: you see the parallel in the examples and you know people who could be in either situation. If you're like most people, you probably envy the first traveler, the one who seems to have already reached the "destination" of preparedness. They get a gleam in their eye when they talk about buckets of wheat and canned goods, they are enthralled by water purification methods, and they seem all too willing to spend an extended period of time in a sleeping bag.

But if you're like me, you feel more like the second chap. You know you need to get to the Land of Preparedness, you even feel drawn to make the trip, but you have absolutely no idea where to start. And let's be honest, you prefer to sleep a few feet above the floor! Here you remain, frozen in place on your doorstep, with a map that you find too complicated to understand tucked in your back pocket. You've hastily thrown a few random items in a duffle bag with absolutely no courage to step off the stoop and begin.

What you need are two things. First, you need a travel companion. Someone to help you along in your journey, share a little of the stress, and enjoy the journey with you. Then, you need a travel agent. Someone who has access to helpful information, tips, and who is available to help you navigate what might as well be a foreign land!

Well, my friends, I'm willing to be that travel companion you need. I can't promise I know everything about where we are going, nor can I make all the decisions for you. But, I'm willing to go on this journey with you and maybe take a turn at peeking at that map! Look for a weekly article in your Tuesday LDS Living e-mail and refer to archived articles under the "Emergency Preparedness Guide" section of ldsliving.com/magazine.

Now all we need to get us to the Land of Preparedness is that travel agent. That's where preparedness experts Emergency Essentials comes in. To access your agent, you don't even need to sally forth from the comfort of your home. Visit Emergency Essential's website, beprepared.com, and a myriad of useful information--products, insightful articles, a preparedness blog, and even a "Food Storage Analyzer," an amazing tool that will help you know what storage you already have and what you still need.

Now is the perfect time to pick up that trusty suitcase and move forward to your destination. And I'll be here too. For the next year, I plan on walking you through a few things, learning as I go, just as you will. We'll discover the wonderful, yet sometimes intimidating, road to preparedness one step at a time. We're on this journey together!

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