The SAD Way of Preparedness Websites – Possibly An Analogy of the Preparedness Life!

SAD400I try to provide links to quality articles every day on Prepper Website. I would say that is my main focus. But I also want the website to be a resource beyond just providing links. So, I have linked to preparedness and related websites (to my detriment in the search engine rankings) below all the articles I link to. Over the years, I have accumulated quite a few websites! And every time I find a new one or one that I haven’t heard about, I add it.

But I also do something that is very sad to me. I mean, I understand it, but it is still sad. Every summer, since it is my off-time, I go through all the listings and remove sites that have either: been deleted, suspended for some reason, have a virus or hasn’t been updated in over 2 months. In my experience, a site that hasn’t been updated in over 2 months will more than likely not come back. Some have sputtered back to life again for a few more posts, only to finally die off. If a website does “come to life” again, a simple email request to me will place it back on the site.

This summer, I removed 79 websites in the Preparedness category and 44 from the other categories combined. Most of these sites were moved to the Inactive category. However, if a site was deleted, suspended or had a virus, I completely removed it from Prepper Website.

Like I said before, this is a sad time for me. I visited many of these sites on a regular basis. I learned a lot from them and I know others did too.

As I was working on moving websites to the inactive category, I couldn’t help but think how the life of a preparedness website sometimes resembles our lives as we prepare.

Running a “good” website takes a lot of effort!

Anyone can get a free WordPress or Blogspot website and throw something together in less than an hour. Even a hosted site, with your own domain site isn’t hard to get up and now, very affordable. But wanting to make your site a place where others will want to come to and visit is another story. There are colors to think of, graphics to consider, themes and layouts to toy with. Then you need to optimize for search engines, setup a mailing list, write guest articles and work on your social media following. And on top of all of this, you need to write GREAT content to inspire your readers and want them to come back! Many bloggers spend HOURS working on their sites with little or no reward. It becomes their “baby” or a part time job.

Living a preparedness lifestyle takes a lot of effort too! We often sacrifice the “fun stuff” so that we will have the funds to buy extra food and supplies. As preppers, many of us understand the importance of keeping our skills sharp, so we read, study and practice. Many spouses out there might refer to the other’s prepping as their “hobby,” or nag that you are spending too much time and money on this Doomsday Prepper stuff! Preparedness becomes your baby, a full time job.

Every website EVENTUALLY struggles to come up with good content.

Yes, every website struggles with this. Many websites start off strong out of the gate. But eventually, ideas and topics for content starts to hinder the amount of times a websites posts articles. I speak from experience! When I started in preparedness, I had all these ideas and wanted to share them with the world! Because I know enough about computers and the internet (to hurt myself), I started a blog. I started strong. I had read somewhere that Mondays and Thursdays were good days to post. I created a schedule and kept it up. I salivated over every visitor to the site! But then I ran out of ideas. I mean, how many times can you write about making fire, food storage, etc… Soon, I wasn’t making my schedule. I made excuses like I was very busy at work and that should come first. But in reality, I went dry.

As preppers, we go dry too. I have also experienced this myself. We start strong with beans, bullets and band aids, but eventually poop out. Sometimes it is just “fear fatigue,” meaning that we are always in a state of waiting for the hammer to drop. That can be stressful and can easily wear you down. Others might get busy with life and just allow other things to take over. And there are those who just give up after feeling they are not getting anywhere. They look around and see friends and family going on wild vacations, spending money on “extras” and just living it up on the weekends. They might feel like they are missing out. The beans, bullets and band aids go up in a closet somewhere. The fad is over and life goes on.

Many websites are a drain.

Like I said, there are free websites that anyone can use to start up a preparedness website. Or, if you choose to go with your own hosted domain, it is now very affordable. But eventually, money is going to leave your pocket. There are products to buy to review, plugins to purchase, software that is needed and upgrades that will make the site look and operate better. Yes, website owners try to earn some money with affiliates and ad sales to off-set these costs. But I will tell you that no one is getting rich off of their website. There are a few that are using a certain “model” that are bringing in significant money, but the bad thing is that they don’t even write their own content and are run by big corporations! And then you have to take into consideration the mental and physical drain. In updating Prepper Website, there have been many nights when I have fallen asleep at my laptop after a day at work.

Prepping can be a drain. Many think that you have to buy a lot of stuff to be prepared. On top of that, many of us always preach that you have to improve your skills and add new ones. When life is happening and you believe that you need to do this to be prepared, it can be draining. There are still times when I go into a store and I’m thinking, “how can this be used in preparedness” or “what do I need for my prep supplies.” I have to break myself of that habit. Always thinking about SHTF or TEOTWAWKI can be exhausting. We all need to be prepared, but you will be no good to anyone if you are a “drained” prepper!

Conclusion

This feels like a very somber article, so let’s end it with some positive points to help in our struggle of preparedness so we don’t go the way of SOME preparedness websites.

Stay Balanced – If you are an extreme prepper, but sometimes miss the “fun” stuff that others seem to be doing, just go do it. Spend the money, bite the bullet and do it. You might have a ton of fun and you might regret taking the time and money to do it. But you might not ever know unless you do it!

Also, you should never sacrifice your marriage, family or job for preparedness. If you are hurting people around you because you HAVE TO PREP, then you are doing something wrong. Find more info. on maintaing “balance” at Prepper Website.

Plan and Make Goals – You might be able to make big goals or you might have to make small goals. It always helps when you know where you want to go. Find more info. about “making goals” at Prepper Website.

Prep without Money – Purpose to find ways to prep without money. This means that you don’t need all the fancy gear! Many have done it. You can too! Find more info. about being “frugal” at Prepper Website.

Stay Consistent – This is bigger than you might think! Just a little, over time, makes a big difference!

Refresh Yourself – You know what you need to stay fresh. Pray, get outside, unwind, take your spouse on a date or whatever. Take some time and don’t be afraid to live your life. Find more about supporting your “relationships” and managing prepper “stress” at Prepper Website.

 

 

This article first appeared on Ed That Matters.

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Todd Sepulveda

I'm the owner/editor of Prepper Website, a DAILY preparedness aggregator that links to the best preparedness articles on the internet. I'm also a public school administrator and a pastor. My personal blog is Ed That Matters, where I write about preparedness and from time to time, education. Connect with me on one of my social media outlets below.

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14 thoughts on “The SAD Way of Preparedness Websites – Possibly An Analogy of the Preparedness Life!

  1. Catherine

    This is a real good article and a lot of people should read it and take it to heart. Burn-out is possible in all endeavors if some one gets too intense.

  2. Christopher de Vidal

    Great stuff. Part of the reason you’ve taken so many sites down is probably also because prepping is losing its fad status. Aside from the reasons you’ve listed, the stock market is up and there have been no major incidents for a while, such as Katrina or 2012 Mayan calendar or Y2K. According to trends.google.com, searches on the survivalism topic are down like 70% from their peak. So, expect less ad revenue going forward.

    I especially identified with the coveteousness felt seeing non-prepping friends go on wild vacations. But, I am solidly convinced the underlying fundamentals are rotten, and so I trudge on.

    Thanks for doing what you do.

  3. PJ

    Todd

    Totally agree, blogging is hard work! The preppring fad comes and goes just like blogs, many of those who stockpiled guns and food are back to taking out Caddy Escalade loans and blowing money on useless vacations or borbels.

    I’m happy to report Prepper-Resources.com is going on 2 years online and still steaming along! Thanks for linking to us when you can.

    PJ

  4. Bill Hoyt

    There’s another factor that applies to prepping websites – once you’ve said everything once, what is there left to say? You start off strong because you’ve got everything still to talk about. But once you’ve discussed pantries, where to live, what to have in your BOB or your SHTF Stockpile, possible TEOTWAWKI events, what remains? At that point there’s a choice you need to make. You will either go over that stuff again, perhaps in more detail – though how many iterations of the Perfect Bugout Bag can you write? – or you’ll have to take up disaster Pr0n to keep stuff fresh and timely. Unfortunately, even NewsPanic websites grow stale after a while.

    There’s no need to be sombre. The fact that a prepper blog has disappeared should not be taken as an indication that a prepper has given up. It is far more likely that the prepper has said everything he intends to say, has worked that out of his system, and has prioritized something in life higher than the maintenance of a blog that has covered everything that the author thought worth covering.

      1. susy

        i must say, ive subbed to your blog for quite some time now. it actually helped me wind down on 50 million others as i use yours as my base…. keep up good work to bloggers who take this to heart as we all know something lurks in darkness. maybe it has wound down some, as there really is just so much you can keep sayin on same subject matter. let everyone go do their thing, so to speak, spend crazy amounts of money frivolessly. i do upon occasion as sometimes ya just have to do somethin for yerself…. but, the day will come whatever it may be, and anyone with any sense knows it is drawing closer . i believe anyway…. anyway, to our diehards that try to keep it real…. i thank you.

    1. Christopher de Vidal

      Famous “frugal zealot” Amy Dacyczyn had what amounted to a popular blog in the 90s, in the form of a paper newsletter. She noted that one advantage of a newsletter over a book is you can re-hash old topics and the current crowd hardly notices. But even she suffered burnout and called it quits. It happens. Inevitably, someone will come along and pick up the thread.

  5. David Spero

    Bill raises a good point.

    There’s another related point as well. I think Todd is being a bit harsh deleting links to inactive websites. If a website has many pages of good content, the good content is still good, whether or not the site has had fresh new pages added.

    I have pages on my site that are years old, but the topics they cover remain current, fresh, and timeless. Things like the shelf life of stored food and meds, for example – as Bill would say, once you’ve written about that, you can check it off your list of topics for good, but it remains a valuable resource, even if the site is just sitting there doing nothing.

    I guess I have a slight vested interest. My site went silent for a couple of months – was busy attending to ‘life’ and out of the country traveling a lot. But it did come back to life again, and most of all, my feeling during the time it was not being freshened was that the hundreds of articles and hundreds of thousands of words of original content were all still doing a public service, still valid, and so on.

    So perhaps a little less sadness, Todd? 🙂

    1. Todd Sepulveda Post author

      Inactive links are not deleted, they are moved to the inactive category. If I have linked to a site that goes inactive, their articles are still found in the tag cloud or through a search. And like I said, a simple email to me will get a website back to the active side.

      Peace,
      Todd

  6. marta brown

    I want to thank you for your steadfastness in posting to your website just about every day of the year. I always look forward to reading and learning from your website. I also appreciate that you include articles written from different perspectives and points of view. I may not agree with what the person is saying but it is good to know what different people are thinking about out there.
    I am sure there are many days when you would rather relax than post to your website, but you have made the commitment and are remaining true to it. You are truly providing a service in this, and I commend and thank you for your dedication.

  7. Pat

    Great article Todd,

    Like a lot of other people on the blogging side of this article I know exactly what you are talking about. From my personal experience, I totally agree that running a blog is hard work. It is difficult to get up every day and write anything – much less a thousand words of content that you hope is engaging, informative and fresh. That is possibly one reason why there are so many blogs that consist of nothing but reposts. I think a lot of people initially view the prospect of blogging and websites in general as easier than they actually are. I have talked to numerous people who dream of starting a website and imagine that with little effort, they will be as big as Amazon.com. “How hard can it be?” they say. Either that or they think it will be simple to write articles and find out eventually that at some point the well goes dry like you mention. It is hard, you have to keep yourself motivated every day and I think that is why so many people let their blogs go.

    I think a blog by its nature is thought of as something that lives on daily or weekly. If the blog author has gone silent, its pages may still hold useful content as David mentioned but somehow the sense of its relevance is diminished in some way. Similar to how I purchase reference books. I would still refer to them for the information in their pages, but in my daily search for information, I go to sites/resources that are current and are keeping pace with the rest of my life. Does that mean they aren’t useful? Not at all, but like you said, they have already given their input on the topics on their pages. If you have read that already, why go back? Google treats sites in a similar fashion in that when they stop being updated, their relevance in searches is impacted negatively. Makes perfect sense to me.

    Some say that Prepping is a fad and that it is going away and I don’t believe that at all. There is more of an interest now than ever before. I just think that a lot of people who thought it would be easy to get out there and create a blog to make money simply realized that it just isn’t simple and eventually quit. When you pour hours into something that doesn’t get any traffic it is extremely frustrating. Believe me I know how this feels. It is no different with any other business in that some fail and some succeed, but it’s so easy to start a blog, there are more people who try. It would stand to reason that more people quit.

    Your overall message is still great though and that is to stick with it. This applies to so much more in life and whether it is your job/blog or your efforts to prepare your family, your marriage or your children, you will have times when you are demoralized and want to quit. If what you are doing is important to you, you have to find ways to get out of that funk and keep going. You will be happier in the long run if this is your desire. Kudos to you Todd for sticking with it all this time!

    Pat

  8. keebler

    I follow.a lot of prepper sites & have learned a lot.I pass on to friends info I like & that have helped me.
    no one near me is a prepper,
    I feel so sorry for the families that have lost everything to Fires & Floods. loosing all they have stored up & Etc; while others are still maybe secure & stocked up.& disasters haven’t effected them.
    I see disasters as helping me be better prepaired, burning me out would be devistateing to me for sure.
    thanks for all the work you do to help “us” the ones that come to you site.
    I appreciate it.
    keeb in the southern woods of Va.

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