Posts Tagged With: What’s doing the stuff mean

Wishbone vs Backbone: Introducing the Doing The Stuff Network

by Todd Walker

Want to make 2014 your most productive, prepared year ever?

Here’s how…

Don’t put a wishbone where your backbone should be!

Doing The Stuff Network

You may wish you had more self-reliance, food security, liberty, optimal health, mad survival skills or less body fat. Many of you, myself included, have made resolutions year after year only to be crushed by failure’s weight.

Stop with all the wishful-thinking and resolutions.

I’ll go even further with more shocking advice – stop setting goals!

Let me explain…

First, let’s put down the crack pipe full of wishful thoughts so we can talk reality.

Our conventional method is doomed from the moment we make the wish. Wishful thinking won’t magically transform into real, long-term results. The same holds true for setting goals.

Four years ago I made a resolution to quit making resolutions to reach an event on the calendar. Ironically, I’ve stuck to my resolution.

By reading this, I assume you want to progress in your climb to preparedness and self-reliance. You (I say “you” when I really mean me) have set goals in the past in a desperate attempt to control future events. We can’t control or predict the future. There’s the disconnect. We only control the steps we take today.

If that’s true, and it is, how do we move forward on our journey together?

The secret is in the process – not wishing a goal will be met! Preparedness is not a climb to some mythical summit. It’s a long journey of small, deliberate steps. 

Make resolutions and goals if that works for you. But please keep in mind that deliberate action takes backbone. Boring backbone!

If you’re seriously sick of having a wishbone where your backbone should be, DRG and I extend a personal invitation for you to join the Doing The Stuff Network.

It’s free to join – no membership fees, no secret handshakes, completely voluntary, skills oriented, and hype-free!

Join the Doing The Stuff Network

A person values whatever he acts to gain or keep.

Knowledge may weigh nothing, but until you act logically, knowledge alone won’t matter in the crucible of life. The laws of nature require all living things to act to sustain life.

Here’s the picture we’re painting. Doing the Stuff takes ACTION. The act of doing is the antidote for wishbones.

We’re building a network of regular people (like your and me) to share our skills, progress, challenges, epic fails, and victories on our preparedness journey together. This community is not a tribe of theorists. 

We are trading theory for action!


Who can join?

To be completely upfront and honest, this community is not open to everyone.

Here’s the only prerequisite to joining the DTS Network …

No spectators allowed!

If you’ve been a spectator on the sidelines and are ready to get some skin in the game, you’re welcome to join. Already doing the stuff? You’re welcome too. Anyone willing to take a series of self-generated, individualized, deliberate actions to decrease dependency and grow self-sufficiency can join.

Be sure to wear your blue-collar. You’ll get your hands dirty!

What can you expect by joining?

By joining the DTS Network, you’re committing to learn a minimum of one new skill in 2014.

Really!? Only one new skill… in a year!?


Don’t write us off as underachievers just yet. People are busy. But one more skill gets you one step closer on our climb.

Here’s the catch…

Once you’ve learned that new skill, you’ll want to learn another one. Warning: Doing the stuff is an addictive gateway drug with side effects of preparedness and self-reliance. Use with reckless abandon.

We welcome only those willing to commit to the process of doing the stuff in 2014! That includes young doers of the stuff. There’s no age limit. Get your kids involved and make this a family, group, or home school project. Along our journey, we’ll help each other carry the heavy stuff, celebrate successes, analyze failures, and make adjustments – without lame, self-appointed ex-pert attitudes!

How do you join the journey?

We’ll keep it Sherpa simple! Find the tab called the “Doing the Stuff” located at the top of our site. Click to open the page and leave a comment letting your fellow DTS Networkers know you’re joining the journey.

Sharing the Stuff

To share the stuff you’re doing, which is one purpose of the DTS Network, we encourage you to use the “Doing the Stuff” page comment section and/or your favorite social media site(s). Be sure to use the hashtag #DoingTheStuff to make it easy for others to connect with you.

Here are 3 dedicated social media pages we created for you to share and connect with your fellow DTS Networkers:

  • Pinterest – We’ve created a group board called “Doing the Stuff Network” for you to Pin your projects. It’ll be our DTS family refrigerator for all our “fridge worthy” self-sufficiency skills we’re working on. 🙂 If you’re on Pinterest and would like to Pin the Stuff on this board, you’ll need an invite to Pin your Stuff. Message me with your Pinterest user name and I’ll invite you to the group.
  • Facebook – You can join our closed FB group, “Doing the Stuff Network“, and post updates on your journey. If you’d like, you can share on your personal FB page as well.
  • Google + – Same as the above groups. You can join the “Doing the Stuff Network” community by requesting an invite.
  • Twitter – There’s no Doing the Stuff Network account on Twitter. Simply use the #DoingTheStuff hashtag on your projects, questions, or discussions.

How do you know what stuff to start doing?

There are certain skills that we all need to pursue for a self-sufficient lifestyle. These categories are broad. Taking action to gain or improve your skills in a sustainable fashion will help to preserve your life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness. And we’ll have fun in the process!

Go ahead and check out the categories on the “Doing the Stuff” page and get started. Feel free to suggest skills that may not be listed yet.

Now is the time to replace your wishbone with that boring backbone you’ve always wanted!

Keep Doing the Stuff!


P.S. – You can also connect with us on TwitterPinterestGoogle +, and our Facebook page. The Doing the Stuff Network community can be found here: PinterestGoogle +, and Facebook. Lots of good stuff going on here… check it out!

P.P.S ~ If you find value in our blog, DRG and I would appreciate your  vote on the “Top Prepper Sites“! You can vote daily by clicking here or on the image below. Check out all the other value-adding Prepper Sites while you’re there.

Thanks for sharing the stuff!

Copyright Information: Content on this site (unless the work of a third-party) may be shared freely in digital form, in part or whole, for non-commercial use with a link back to this site crediting the author. If you are interested a third-party article, please contact the author directly for republishing information.

Categories: Doing the Stuff | Tags: , , , | 9 Comments

Essential Steps to Take Before Crossing Your Doorsill

by Todd Walker

Don’t leave home without it!

Steps to Take Before Crossing Your Doorsill

What did you forget?

My bud over at For Tomorrow We... shared with me his article on building an office emergency kit. It reminded me that I should update my kit – and plan. Tip ‘o the hat, my friend!

If you’re fortunate enough have a job in today’s shrinking economy, it’s likely that you spend over a third of your life commuting to and from work. Whether your ‘office’ is a construction site, hospital, toll booth, boardroom, or classroom like mine, you must leave the house to get there.

Having a few preparedness tools stacks the deck in favor of you getting home.

It all starts…

Before Stepping Over Your Doorsill

I give Dirt Road Girl a hard time about how long it takes her to get ready when we’re leaving the house. She returns the good-natured ribbing *hands on those beautiful hips and eyes rolling* as I start my ritual of loading my pockets and belt with stuff I carry everyday.

I just smile and say, “Ya never know!”

Pockets Full of Preps

The stuff you carry on your person is known in the prepper community as EDC (Everyday Carry). If you work in a victim zone (Weapons Free Zone) as I do, you’ll have to get creative with preparedness and self-defense items.

Ask a prepper if he has a knife on him. You’re likely to hear what my daddy’s says…

“I’ve got my pants on, don’t I!”

But wait! There’s more room for other useful stuff besides a knife.

Wallet (some conventional and unconventional items)

  • Money (stash some so the spouse and kids don’t find it)
  • Duct tape – wrap 3 feet around an expired store card
  • I.D. to prove your residency when local law enforcement have blocked off your neighborhood after a natural disaster
  • Emergency contact numbers on a card. If your smart phone is lost, stolen, or dead, it’s no longer real smart. I personally don’t have my adult children’s phone numbers memorized. That’s why an old-fashioned paper card is important.
  • Pre-paid phone card. They work if you find a pay phone at a truck stop.
  • Condom. Of the extra-large, un-lubricated variety. Settle down, now! Condoms have more than one use. Creek Stewart shows 11 redundantly resilient ways a condom could save your life – with pictures and videos!


  • Sidearm – This item, along with a spare magazine, is on my person everywhere I go. The only exceptions are places my government permission slip won’t allow me to exercise my natural rights – like my victim zone classroom!
  • Flashlight – I carry a Streamlight ProTac 2L clipped inside my pocket.
  • Reading glasses – LightSpecs go where I go. I use the two LED lights on these glasses far more than any other flashlights I own. DRG can tell you about my flashlight fetish.
  • Cell phone – smart phones are pocket-size, survival super-computers.
  • Swiss Army Knife – tool of my trade as the resident handyman at school
  • Tooth picks – it’s a personal thing.
  • Chap stick
  • Lighter
  • Keychain ferro rod
  • Metal mechanical pencil – for school.

Here’s a place for the rest of your stuff…

Get Home Bag

Guys ~ time to swallow your pride and invest in a good man purse. One peek into the bottomless pit the ladies call a purse will convince you of its utility.

Manly men and only a few metro-sexuals correctly refer to their Man Purse as Get Home Bags (GHB). A book bag, shoulder bag, brief case, or small duffel bag will serve the purpose. Keep in mind that a well stocked GHB isn’t built to get you through a sudden zombie apocalypse or end of the world scenario. GHB’s are simply a stopgap measure to get you home safely.

Your family is depending on you – prepare accordingly.

Here’s a look at my GHB ‘man purse’:

Maxpedition Jumbo™ E.D.C. Versipack® – (I have no affiliation with this company).

Steps to Take Before Crossing Your Doorsill

My Maxpedition GHB

I’ve owned this pack for a few years and absolutely love its utility! Your ‘office’ environment will determine the type of GHB you carry and it’s contents. If you wear suits and ties to the office, the Maxpedition line of bags will stick out like a man wearing a speedo to a lady-preachers convention. Choose a GHB that blends in naturally.

What to Pack in a GHB

Personalize your bag to meet your needs (meds, contact numbers, etc.). Outside those personalized items, I recommend these items for every GHB:

Essential Steps to Take Before Crossing Your Doorsill

Your packing list

  • Container: I carry a stainless steel water bottle full of agua. The metal container also allows you to kill nasties in drinking water via boiling method.
  • Fire: A couple of ways to make fire – lighter, storm matches, ferro rod, and sure-fire tinder. Fire is even useful in an urban jungle. My fire kit is in a self-contained Altoids tin.
  • Self-defense Weapons: If legal at your ‘office’, pack heat. There are many compact handguns on the market to choose from. Less lethal pepper spray should also be included.
  • Flashlight: Ever change a flat tire with a mini Maglite between your teeth? Not fun! Invest in a good headlamp for hands-free operation. Don’t forget extra batteries. I wrap 3 AAA batteries in yellow electrical tape with the packing date written on the tape. This does two things – 1.) keeps them in one unit and 2.) reveals their freshness date.
  • Cordage: 50 feet of 550 paracord.
  • Knife: A fixed blade knife and a multitool.
  • Calories: Energy bars, pemmican, jerky, nuts, trail mix, and sardines. Be sure to rotate/eat any nuts in your GHB periodically to prevent spoilage. If your GHB is exposed to extreme heat inside your vehicle, spoilage can be a major concern.
  • Cover: Lightweight poncho, tarp or contractor garbage bags. I also pack an emergency space blanket. A tarp is in my vehicle emergency kit.
  • Compass and Map: Navigational instruments that don’t depend on electronics. Detours happen in disasters. A map of your city and state (states if you’re a traveling salesman) is an essential tool. Practice and be familiar with several routes home before a crisis. Reminder: Keep your fuel tank at least half full.
  • Pencil and Paper: A small note pad for taking notes, leaving messages, and notes when using a map and compass.
  • Paper Money: Cache some cash of different denominations in different places in your GHB. I can roll about 5 bills and stuff them into a metal pill container.
  • Band-Aids: I pack Moleskin, a few Band-Aids, moist wipes, Advil packets, hand sanitizer, and a partial roll of flexible equine bandage wrap. I also pack duct tape and a 100% cotton bandana.
  • Dust Mask: A N95 mask allows you to breathe without inhaling harmful dust particles. They’re cheap, lightweight, and can be MacGyvered for other uses. Remember the scenes from 911 of people running through the streets of NY enveloped by dust and disaster debris.
  • Bandana: Speaking of MacGyvered items, pack a 100% cotton bandana in your GHB.
  • Whistle: A simple signaling device to alert rescuers – if you want to be found.
  • Bug Spray: A small pen-style container fits easily in my kit.

Note to the ladies: Jane over at Mom With a Prep reviewed her GHB, or Day Bag, just for you. Just so you know, she’s not your typical soccer mom. So don’t call it a purse to her face!

A good GHB doesn’t take into account your vehicle or office kit. You’ve prepared your car and office emergency supplies, right?

Whether you love your job or not, the fact is that you spend a lot of time away from your safe place called home. The important people in your life are counting on you to get home in one piece. Your GHB is another prep to help you step back over your doorsill after work.

I need to make a point here about all the stuff in your GHB. It’s not too effective if you don’t practice and learn to use the items.

Keep Doing the Stuff of Self-Reliance,


P.S. – You can also keep up with the Stuff we’re Doing on TwitterPinterestGoogle +, YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook… and over at our Doing the Stuff Network.

P.P.S – If you find value in our blog, Dirt Road Girl and I would appreciate your vote on Top Prepper Sites! You can vote daily by clicking here or on the image below. Check out all the other value-adding sites while you’re there…

Thanks for Sharing the Stuff!

Copyright © by Survival Sherpa: In light of the recent theft of all my content by a pirate site, my sharing policy has changed. I do not permit the re-posting of entire articles from my site without express written consent by me. My content on this site may be shared in digital form (200 words or less) for non-commercial use with a link back (without no-follow attribute) to the original article crediting the author. All photos, drawings, and articles are copyrighted by and the property of Survival Sherpa. You are more than welcome to share our photos and articles on social media for educational purposes as long as you link back to the original article/photo with credit to the author.

Categories: Doing the Stuff, Preparedness, Survival | Tags: , , , | 27 Comments

Regular Folk Taking the Doing The Stuff Challenge

by Todd Walker

Inspiration comes from perspiration. Thought I’d share a few of our fellow Sherpa’s projects.

1.) Crunchy Mama shared with me that her son has begun making paracord survival bracelets. He’s a little entrepreneur. I’ve offered to send her a paracord jig that makes creating bracelets very easy. (Sorry, I don’t have permission to post pics yet)

2.) Here’s a look at Caroline Cooper’s homemade medical kit.

medical kit Healthy Household: Homemade Medical Kits

3.) MI Patriot made these tomato ladders. The ladders are painted primary colors and are very functional. DRG and I just took ours down last week, folded them up, and stored them for next season.

Todd's Tomato Ladders in primary colors

Primary colored tomato ladders

4.) One of my new friends on FB, Perky Prepping Gramma, is learning how to reload ammunition. Check her out. She’s a doing the stuff machine!


What new skills are you learning?

Let me know and we’ll add them to our growing Doing The Stuff List! You can submit photos to me via email (survivalsherpa at gmail dot com) or send me a link if you have it published on a blog with permission to reprint it here.

The projects should be relevant to general preparedness, self-sufficiency, homesteading, wilderness survival, self-defense/security, wild food foraging, real food, functional fitness, and self-reliance. I’ve never done a contest with prizes on our site but I’m considering it for a Doing the Stuff Challenge.

What do you think? Interested? If there’s enough interest, I’ll get it organized and started. Let me know.

In the mean time,

Keep doing the stuff!


P.S. ~ DRG and I got our daughter and grandson moved into their new place this weekend. Feeling more secure. Met several of her new neighbors. One of her next door neighbors is an old friend of mine! In case you missed it, you can read about her recent break in here.

P.P.S. ~ As always, if anything from this site adds value to your life, please pass it on. You can also connect with us on TwitterPinterest, and our new Facebook page.

Any information on this site may be shared freely, in part or whole, with a link back to this site crediting the author. Thanks for sharing the stuff!

Categories: Doing the Stuff, Preparedness, Real Food, Resilience, Self Defense, Self-reliance | Tags: , , | 5 Comments

“Doing the Stuff” vs Pretending

by Todd Walker

Are you ‘Doing the Stuff?’


How well do you know your stuff?

To answer, you need to know what ‘Doing the Stuff’ involves. And how it applies to your individual life, physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.

In a nutshell…

Doing the stuff of self-reliance and preparedness takes action. Non-living things, like a rock or water, do not take action to exist. The matter they are made of will always exist and can’t be destroyed. Living things, on the other hand, have to take self-directed actions to sustain life and survive.

These life-sustaining actions (Doing the Stuff) take practice.

No amount of social media notoriety can replace Doing the Stuff.

The low profile preppers with 17 followers on Twitter may be the SmartestPreppers on the planet. They’re innovative, hard-working, and focused.

Here’s what I mean…

As my online presence grew, I began to be more concerned with twiends, likes, and shoutouts than actually doing the stuff of preparedness. Ego bait is very alluring.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m very thankful, humbled actually, to have friends and followers in cyberspace! But in the end, when it really counts, cyber friends can’t physically be here to help me and my family. That’s on me. As it should be.

Four categories of Doing the Stuff are listed below:

  • Physical Stuff
  • Mental Stuff
  • Emotional Stuff
  • Spiritual Stuff

First, let’s cover physical preparedness. Not because it’s the most important. It happens to land first on my list.

The physical stuff of prepping seems to garner the most attention in the preparedness community. Shelter, gear, gadgets, guns, gold, tools, first aid, food, and various shiny objects are all part of being prepared. But make no mistake, all four areas are intertwined on our journey to preparedness.

Doing the Stuff with Your Stuff (gear/tools/equipment)

Get intimate with your physical stuff. This is the part where you have to actually use your stuff. Whether it’s a gun or pressure canner, spending quality time with equipment builds confidence in you and those depending on your ability.

Hanging a hammock seems like a simple task. Connect the ends to two trees. That’s if you have enough strap or rope in your pack. Until you practice with your equipment, it’s not idiot-proof.

Doing The Stuff vs Pretending

Testing DRG’s new hammock and straps in the safety of our backyard.

I bought DRG commercial straps for her hammock instead of my DiY rope system. The straps come with loops along its length which makes it easier for her to connect the hammock carabiners.

Use the K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple Sherpa) method every chance you get. I like using climbing rope to hang my sleep system. The rope adds another layer of redundancy to my kit. But more importantly, this is the method I practice. My tarp and hammock can be hung in under 5 minutes.

Testing in different conditions brings new challenges. Try these exercises:

  • Wear a pair of winter gloves when testing equipment to simulate cold weather survival. Can you tie a simple truckers knot or figure 8 knot with gloves on?
  • Practice with your off-hand to simulate an injury to your strong hand.
  • Visual aides (glasses) won’t always be available. Practice without your readers on. But keep extras in your kits 😉
  • Doing the stuff in the dark. Yeah, we’re human. We know how to do that in the dark! That’s not what I’m referring to. If having the lights on ever becomes a security risk, being intimately familiar with your gear would be a huge advantage.

I hope I never need to employ our stuff to survive a life or death situation. We practice anyway.

Doing the Stuff in Life or Death Scenarios

The effects of stress in survival situations can turn your practiced skills into mush. Under the stress of life or death threats, our sympathetic nervous system (SNS) takes over as a survival mechanism. We know it as the ‘fight or flight’ response.

The SNS takes over and dumps stress hormones which affects our vision (tunnel vision), thought process (brain shuts down), fine motor skill (loss of dexterity), and sends massive amounts of blood to our large muscle groups (to fight or flight).

You get the picture. Fine motor skills are diminished and the gross motor skills are enhanced. Making your plans as simple as possible, and applying the K.I.S.S. method to your gear, allows you to take advantage of this shift if you’re ever faced with life threatening survival.

Doing the Stuff for Your Body

Doing the stuff involves more than just testing and tweaking equipment. Physical conditioning will play an important role in our survival, both now and after a reset.

The most important place to start doing the stuff for functional fitness is in your kitchen.

  • 90% of the cause of chronic health conditions can be found on America’s dinner plate.
  • Be your own health vigilante. Take your health into your own hands. This past year taught us that modern medicine is run by pharmaceutical companies. There’s a chemical soup in pill form for everything – with horrible side effects.
  • Explore holistic health practices based on plant medicine.
  • Eat nutrient dense foods. Avoid processed junk foods.
  • Get regular exercise without being married to the gym. Develop a mindset of functional fitness. Lift heavy things, move slowly every day, and sprint (max capacity) once every 7 to 10 days.

This barely scratches the surface on doing the physical stuff of preparedness. Hopefully it helps you answer my opening question, “Are you Doing the Stuff?” If not, why not?

Preppers are motivated by the thought of losing or not having things (liberty, food, water, shelter, and all those cool shiny objects) that sustain life – even if they’re not scarce now. We stock up. To add even more value to your stuff, start practicing with it.

Keep Doing the Stuff,


Keep Doing the Stuff of Self-Reliance,


P.S. – You can also keep up with the Stuff we’re Doing on TwitterPinterestGoogle +, and our Facebook page… and over at the Doing the Stuff Network on PinterestGoogle +, and Facebook.

P.P.S – If you find value in our blog, Dirt Road Girl and I would appreciate your vote on Top Prepper Sites! You can vote daily by clicking here or on the image below. Check out all the other value-adding sites while you’re there…

Thanks for Sharing the Stuff!

Copyright: Content on this site (unless the work of a third-party) may be shared freely in digital form, in part or whole, for non-commercial use with a link back to this site crediting the author. All links in articles must remain intact as originally posted in order to be republished. If you are interested a third-party article, please contact the author directly for republishing information.


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Categories: Preparedness, Self-reliance, Survival | Tags: , , | 26 Comments

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