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Many Americans Have Lost Their Self-Reliance, But Here’s How We Can Get it Back

Many Americans Have Lost Their Self-Reliance, But Here’s How We Can Get it Back

Eighty years or so ago, Americans knew how to get along by relying on their families and building their homesteads. They would grow their food, store it, repair things, make their own cloth diapers and soap, and so on. Products were built to last and repairs were made. 

Americans will just buy something new rather than repair anything. This changed around WW2, with the rise of the modern-day supermarket and department store. The microwave dinner era of the 1950s made the way we used to live look quaintly. Nowadays, with the age of smartphones and the internet, everyone is more plugged in than ever. Unfortunately, far too few of us are connected in person.

 The average grocery store can offer up to 50 thousand products on the shelves, and the “makers” of yesteryear. And anything you want can now be delivered directly to your door without even having to leave your couch. One in five millennials won’t know the difference between a Phillips head screwdriver and a flat one. About half of Americans can’t iron their clothing. The self-reliance of yesteryear is a distant memory. However, we can still get it back. Here’s how.

Can We Regain Our Self-Reliance?

By the simple way they lived their lives, our great-grandparents were prepared. Emergency preparedness wasn’t really a thing, because it didn’t have to be. And we can learn a lot from that! Here are just a few ideas of what we can do to regain some self-reliance.

  • Consider learning how to hunt for food. This doesn’t have to mean owning firearms if you’re opposed to that, there are plenty of options you can learn how to do such as how to rig snares and traps. 
  • Plant a vegetable garden. Everything tastes better when you grow it yourself! And it’s a great family activity that gets everyone outside. 


  • Learn how to bake bread. 


  • Learn how to preserve the food you grow. Pickling, canning, and other food storage skills are great to learn. 


  • Learn how to spot edible plants in the wild. 


  • Learn how to repair your own items at home. This is one area where the internet always comes in handy. There are thousands of Youtube videos and blogs on a plethora of DIY topics!

 Maybe the most important thing we can do after we learn these handy skills is to pass them down to our children. This is how we can start to regain our self-reliance. 

We Are Still All in This Together

More Prepared would like to thank all of our first responders and essential workers keeping everything running during this trying time of COVID-19. As long as we all keep wearing masks, practice social distancing and wash our hands, the pandemic will subside - even if it doesn’t feel like it. And while learning how to be self-reliant is important, no one can get along in this word alone. We need unity and togetherness now more than ever.