Build Your Personal Resiliency

If you don't have personal resiliency you are always at risk.  The least little thing that goes wrong has the potential to wreck your life.

At minimum, this sets you back and decreases your happiness while you are trying to fix whatever is wrong or deal with some situation that could have easily been handled with some thinking and planning on your part.

A carefree, worry free lifestyle requires you to spend a bit of time and effort working on your personal resilience.

Personal Resiliency and Money

The simplest way to increase your personal resiliency with money is to work full-time at something with good pay and some quality-of-life benefits.  This work should pay enough to easily pay for your normal living expenses, save 10 – 15% of your gross income for the future and have some fun. 

This work should not really involve more than the typical 40 hour work week.  Maybe some more hours when needed occasionally or if you find you absolutely love doing this work and make a ton of money by doing so.  Too much time working does not allow you the time to take care of your health, have some fun and improve other aspects of your life.

Having personal resiliency means you could lose this job and find another comparable one in pay, benefits and satisfaction without too much trouble.  It  would also mean you could make somewhat less money and still be fine financially.

If you have energy and time, work part-time at something different (job or business) than your full-time job for a few hours a week, every other week or once a month.  The money you make could be allocated with half going to savings/investments and half to fun.  This extra work is mostly for younger people with plenty of energy and free time to rapidly build surplus savings and have more fun.  As you get older with more family responsibilities and less energy, you would expect to be unable to put in lots of hours.

The key to this arrangement is to limit your living expenses to be within your main job’s income.

Alternatively, you could spend some of your spare non-working, non-exercise, non-fun times in education or training to do a different or expanded full-time job (or business) that pays more or is more satisfying. This can take the form of universities, technical schools, apprenticeships, internships, courses or self-taught.

Continue to develop other work skills, build your capacity to work harder and work longer.  Be able to get a job doing whatever.  You will always be able to get a job, even in the worst of times, if you can endure poor work conditions, like long hours standing, hot, cold, tedium and  even abuse.

Develop some other ways to make some extra money that do not take much time.  Maybe buying and selling stuff.  This rarely generates a lot of consistent money, but some extra $ is always nice.  Make productive use of the extra money...perhaps ¼ to buying more stuff to sell, ¼ to savings, ¼ to fun and ¼ to buy things to become more resilient.

Keep saving, investing, and paying down any debts at a rapid pace.  Too much debt is tough to deal with over time.  You cannot go wrong eliminating debt. 

Save an appropriate amount for retirement, but also set aside savings for the not-so-distant-future. You don't want to lock up all your money for a future you that might not even live long enough to enjoy it.

Try to trim normal monthly expenses.  Everyone is trying to get us to sign up for irritating subscriptions of various sorts. 

Build up 3 to 6 months (maybe more) of living expenses in liquid savings (some combination of paper cash you have hidden, savings accounts, checking accounts, money market accounts, silver, and gold coins).

Pay your bills early or they come in.  Allocate money this month for bills a month or two or longer into the future.  You could consider this part of your 3 to 6 months living expense savings.

If you spend down your savings for a big need, a needed big purchase or something grand, take some time to build it back up again.  Be patient.  Small savings build up over time.

Personal Resiliency and Your Stuff

Develop some collections of things you enjoy, or that are helpful to you and that are also valuable to others that could be converted to money (sold) or used to barter.  There is a huge savings in time and money over the years by not needing to replace things because the things you have are fine.

One of the most critical personal resiliency items to obtain is canned food, that you would like to eat, and bottled water.  Obtain enough to last a few weeks.  You will need to do some math to determine how much.

Frozen food in the freezer is good too, but in an electrical outage, of limited uses.

Inexpensive needs are always good to stock up - Paper products and personal needs (toilet paper, napkins, paper towels, soaps of various kinds, etc.).

Do some research on more expensive items as this can become an interesting hobby as well as a store of value;  Jewelry.  Watches.  Tools.  Kitchenware.  Guns and ammunition.  Knives.  Higher quality boots and shoes.  Higher quality clothes.  Luxury items.  Silver coins.  Gold coins.  Liquor.  Nice furniture & furnishings.

Continue to make your surroundings comfortable and enjoyable.  Just enjoying being home doesn’t cost that much.

I think having a newer car and maintaining it well is a huge component of a person’s personal resilience.  You can always get to paying work or escape something bad.

Keep your vehicles fueled up, especially in the winter.

When you need something or need to do something, get it or do it.  Don’t delay.  If it’s big or expensive, make plans for it and schedule it in your planner.  Don’t let this gnaw at you.  Take care of things as best you can as they arise.

Personal Resiliency and Your Health

Do things that help your health, fitness, and energy levels.

Weight train with a reasonable volume.  As good as weight training is for people, it is easy to get carried away, becoming overly sore, getting injured, or rundown.

Work toward feeling healthy, happy and with energy to do what you want.  Walk.  Watch what you drink.  Avoid sugar.  Cut back on the carbohydrates.  Eat more meat, especially beef.

Get plenty of sleep.  Nap as needed.  Minimize stress.

Listen to your body.  If you are overly sore and tired or run-down, don’t weight train, for example.

Have your teeth cleaned at the dentist every year, maybe twice a year.  Deal with dental issues as they come up.  Being able to eat what you’d like when you’re old will be a luxury.  Spend plenty of time and effort on your teeth daily.

Spend a bit of time in the sun as you can.  This is not easy for most people with the timing.

Supplement – Vitamin D, Vitamin C, Fish Oil, Multivitamins.  Do your research on these.

If you feel rundown…rest.  As long as it takes.

Personal Resiliency and Insurance (Obviously)

  • Health insurance.  If possible, make use of a high deductible health insurance plan with a Health Savings Account.  This allows you to set aside all the money that would normally go to your insurance premiums into your own investment account.  Please note that if you normally have a lot of health insurance costs every year or anticipate having  some, perhaps a pregnant wife or young children, then this would need extremely careful consideration.
  • Life insurance
  • Disability insurance
  • Vehicle insurance
  • Homeowners or renters insurance

Winter Personal Resiliency

Winter Bucket

Put this bucket in your trunk at the beginning of every winter…just in case.  If you have more than one vehicle, you should prepare a bucket like this for all of them.  Put these items in the bucket:

  • Sand & scoop.  The sand is to put under your tires on an icy spot to give you some traction if you get stuck.  I think I already gave you a small shovel years ago to deal with too much snow more effectively in front of your tires.  The scoop is a backup shovel and to help place the sand under your tires..  . 
  • Scraper & snow brush.  Keep your normal scraper and snow brush up front.  These are extra if you misplace the ones you have, or they break, or to have two people clear the vehicle or to give to someone in need.  You will notice some people are totally unprepared for winter.
  • Windshield deicer.  Very handy after an ice storm or freezing rain.
  • Flares.  If you are stuck or have a vehicle issue on the side of the road when it’s dark, the flares will help other drivers see you.  These flares only last 15 minutes…so keep that in mind.  You should probably keep the flares in your vehicle all the time, not just the winter.
  • Protein bars.  If you are stuck in your car for a long time, like during a long blizzard, at least you won’t totally starve.  Eat these in the spring and buy a new package every fall.
  • Wool blanket.  The wool blanket is for extra warmth during a real problem in the winter.  I leave my wool blanket in the truck year around as it is handy for other things as well…picnics, camping, etc.
  • Hat & glove.  Obviously, wear a normal winter coat with hat and gloves in the pocket.  The extra hat and gloves are for backup if you run into a problem in the winter, such as extreme cold, or yours get wet or to lend to someone else in need. 

Other tips

  • Put an older winter coat in your vehicle.  Use a coat that would work well when you’re lying on the ground trying to remove snow from under your car during a blizzard.
  • Keep your cell phone charged up and handy.
  • Keep your vehicle fueled up.
  • Install new winter wiper blades every winter.
  • Replace the tires as necessary.
  • Keep your vehicle(s) well-maintained.
  • Keep a AAA membership.

With good tires, newer wiper blades, a well-maintained, fueled up vehicle, being responsible, watching the weather and some luck, you may never need any of this.  All of this is…just extra personal resilience.

Personal Resiliency Wrap Up

This is a lot of things to do that can cost quite a bit.  But, just as you would keep spending money and time having adventures that are fun to you, building your memory bank and keeping track of your adventures on paper or in your computer, you should work on your personal resiliency.

Consider it another adventure.

› Personal Resiliency

The only way I could become the happier man I am today was by leaving my wife.  You might be in the same situation I was in.  I suggest you take a look at my book - Leave Your Wife & Become a Happier Man with the 3 Step System.

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