If you are reading this then you are probably among the worlds privileged. If that is the case, then this post is aimed right at you. In the coming world things are probably going to be a bit different. Not post nuclear mutants different, but a lot less luxuries different, and then you will discover what you can do. It is far more than you think you can do.
Right now you are limited by the world around you… but your body and mind have capabilities so far beyond what you can imagine.
You can, with enough conditioning, learn to run a hundred kilometers a day, every day if need be.
You can, with enough hunger, learn to trap, kill, and finally eat rats, mice, squirrels, cats, even dogs (although dogs are a special case where most of the time you are better off keeping and training them… they will help you get far more food than they eat)
You can, with enough motivation and training, learn to climb an almost sheer wall.
You can, with enough stress, stay awake for a week at a stretch.
You can, with enough motivation, kill someone.
Most of us are never tested that far in the western world, but as humans we have the genes for all of these things. They are our heritage… and they are a heritage that we will probably be forced to rediscover. These things are not that far in the past, or that geographically distant in the present. In time of war (and I promise you, there are people in Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Ethiopia and may other countries experiencing this right now) most people are forced to stretch beyond the limits of what we believe we can endure. Even then, it often is not enough, but even those that don’t make it fight harder in life than we in our comfortable society based on pushing around data ever have to. I know this because there have been a few times in my life where I have gone beyond what I thought I could. Times when I discovered that eating food others have thrown out is actually not that bad, that sleeping on a heating grate is a decent option compared to sleeping on bare ground, that simply not giving up is often so hard, but is the only way through. All of this, and I still haven’t seen what the average Somali sees on a daily basis.
Now, if these tests are coming, if this world is the world of the future (and it probably is) then we can either prepare for it, or not. If you have a strong community around you, you probably won’t get the worst of things… so build one. If your body is stronger and faster than most, more efficient, then you can survive better, so strengthen your body. If you are used to making do, then you will be better equipped to make do, so learn how to make things for yourself, how to live without luxuries, how to survive.
This is true survivalism, and while specifics are great, they aren’t at the core of it. At the core is being capable and competent, the kind of person who handles a crisis when it hits instead of falling to pieces. Becoming that kind of person is useful even if everything stays the same… because you might get hit with a major storm, a gas leak that causes your house to be unusable for weeks, etc. Why not get yourself ready for it now instead of waiting until you need to?