After listening and watching to several podcasts and videos over the last few years as well as living life, I have figured out a few things. One is be prepared. The next is to take care of your family. The third thing is that having a community of like-minded people is far better than being the lone wolf.
Before I really get started on this topic, I understand there is many different viewpoints on this topic. I don't see a wrong answer for this. This is my view from what I have experienced and learned.
A community of like-minded people can be an awesome thing. The amount of work and ideas that happen can be fantastic. Communication flows well. Everyone knows what skills and talents the others possess. Division of labor and resources is easier. When one person needs help, others help.
There can be downfalls to a community of like-minded people too. People change their minds sometimes. Viewpoints can change. Beliefs can change. Those people become a danger to the rest of the community. However, those people can be weeded out.
Before you even consider a community of people who will support you in your beliefs and be a blessing to you and those around you, consider who you want in your group. Things to think about would be:
* what is important to you in beliefs, morals, politics, daily living, habits, etc.
* if you would trust them implicitly
* their past and present ways of living
* if they have family: how are they raising their kids, how do they treat their spouse, and how does their household run
* do they have the same ideas in being prepared for anything or maybe is doing things you can learn from
* if their financial situation mirrors yours or is better/worse, similar spending habits, barters well and fairly, does tasks/jobs without the expectation of being "paid" every time
* treats their neighbors with respect and treats other how they would like to be treated
* their medical history and any medical issues they have now
* how do they deal with personal security and operational security
* any bad habits such as smoking, drugs, addictions, etc.
* how they deal with stress and bad news
* do they walk the talk and not talk the talk
* what skill sets or talents they possess
No two people are going to be completely alike, but a clash of differences can make for difficult living and working conditions. You have to decide what is important to you. The phrase "You can choose your friends, but you can't choose your family" is very relevant here. You can choose the people in your community. You can choose the people whom you will rely on and possibly trust with your life. You can choose those whom you want to surround yourself with.
You never know...you might be living with these people someday.
I don't want to dis-include family here. Some people will include their family or they won't. That is a choice you have to make. While I don't believe family is ever a liability, they can bring their own set of problems to the table with not believing like you do or having issues that are not resolvable. Family can also bring a lot of drama that needs to be solved sooner than later. Some people will choose their family over all others just because they know they can rely on them. Again, this is a personal decision.
For me, I have a tough time trusting people. Once I do trust someone, they are in my life and considered someone I can rely on for anything. I will do almost anything for those people too. Once that trust is broken, I have a very tough time restoring the trust back into the relationship. Like any relationship/friendship, trust is very, very important. Reliability is a very close second. Honesty would be third.
Having a list of character traits that are important to you is very important. First, that list will give you your guidelines to living life. I am huge believer in treating others how you want to be treated. The list will help that. Second, you will be able to weed out those who don't belong in your life or, at least, your group. Remember, we are thinking of like-minded people whom we could live with if we came to that point.
The other factors I have listed are important, but nothing is as important as the character and morals of a person. So think about who you want in your community. Nuture those people and relationships so you can truly be a community.
Thanks for reading!