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9 Skills For When SHTF You Should Be Learning

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Are you ready for anything that’s to come? A practical prepper would equip himself with survival skills for SHTF situations. Here’s how you can, too.

RELATED: 377 Survival Hacks And Skills You Should Know

Essential Survival Skills for SHTF Scenarios

1. Cooking

cooking-dinner-on-firewood-stove-using | survival food

While this is not a skill that impresses most survivalists or finds its way into the pages of prepper fiction, cooking from scratch is critical. Many American families eat out for most of their meals.

Not only will you need to make three meals a day in SHTF, but you might also need to cook foods you have never cooked before or things you are not good at cooking.

Whatever food you have is what you will need to know how to cook.

2. Blacksmithing

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This is a dual-purpose skill that gives you the ability to both fix things and to barter or even sell items.

If you store up metal know and have bellows, you could be making axes, knives, hinges, and many other implements in an SHTF situation. Life gets weird when Lowes and Walmart are closed.

Blacksmithing takes a lot of work and practice but if you get started now you can make a huge difference later.

3. Woodworking

carpenters-using-spokeshave-decorate-woodwork | carpentry

The ability to work wood is another powerhouse skill that can work for you in many ways in an SHTF situation. Woodworking skills could be used to build your own home in a new location!

You never know how wild it could get. Not to mention you can leverage this skill for repair and skill barter just like blacksmithing.

4. Trapping

farmer-caught-mole-steel-trap | animal trapping

You can store a lot of food, but there are some things that you will run out of before others. Meat protein is one of them.

It is awfully hard to store a lot of meat protein for a long time. Fresh meat can be had through hunting but the use of steel traps in hunting will go much further.

There is no way to get good at it other than simply doing it. The problem is that most preppers don’t even have the stomach for it. I suggest you give it a whirl.

5. Hunting and Shooting

autumn-hunting-season-woman-hunter-gun | hunting

I would like to say hunting and shooting. You should practice how to stalk a target, outmaneuver it, and put it down.

You would hope that this target is one of four legs rather than two, but the time could come where protecting your family might require that you outmaneuver those dangerous 2-legged mammals.

Shooting in ranges, tactical training, and good old-fashioned deer hunting all have their place.

6. Security

blank-clipboard-pen-hunting-equipment-on | skills SHTF

Security is a philosophy, but it is also a skill. In SHTF you are going to concern yourself not just with the security of your home but your neighbors, your community, and maybe even beyond.

Reading, wargaming, and creating printed plans for such situations are all great ways to practice your security acumen.

7. First Aid 

person-wrapping-his-friends-injured-arm | first aid

People will get sick. People will get injured. Do you know what to do about that? You see, there could come a time when a family member gets sick and the rest of the household turns to you for the solution.

Could you be the family doctor? You need medical books for this one, but you also need some training that can stop the bleeding classes and take free CERT classes.

8. Emergency Communications

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How do you plan to communicate if the grid goes down? What if it is just cell service?

There are means of emergency communication out there, but you must both own the hardware and have the skills to use them.

The go-to method of SHTF communication is the HAM radio. You need a license to truly take advantage of comms method. Get to work on this and join a local amateur radio group, they are everywhere!

9. Leadership

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Who is going to be the leader of this SHTF community? Do you know them? Who is going to have all the answers for surviving TEOTWAWKI?

There is a good chance that you could slip into the leadership role by default or that you might need to take the leadership role.

Leadership is a learned skill and you can learn a lot through books but putting yourself in high-stress situations with people looking to you for answers is as good as it gets.

This could come from starting a local group that plays sports together, works out together, or does something else altogether. Maybe it’s your survival group.

Watch this video from City Prepping to learn what you need to do in the first 90 days of a collapse:

Are you ready to take a leadership role in your community and unleash a cache of survival skills to keep you and your people safe? If not, it’s time to get to work.


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Which of these survival skills for SHTF situations are you going to learn first? Let us know why in the comments section!

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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on July 27, 2020 and has been updated for quality and relevancy.




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