Many zombie survival guides talk about being prepared. If you are going to outlive the undead, you need to have the right skills, equipment, and mindset. Do you possess the strength and the skill to make critical decisions when they count? Here are ten hard questions you need to ask yourself before a zombie apocalypse.
When the dead come back to life, do you stay where you are or do you run?
This is the first and most basic question at an animal instinct level. Fight or flight? Assuming that all men and women are created equal (Life pro tip: They’re not), and we have the same level of intestinal fortitude, one must make a critical decision about fleeing the safety of the place you are in or risk moving to find a better location. In the event of a first encounter, this is the most immediate and critical decision you will have to make.
Do you have a multi-tool on you at all times?
We all remember and love the MacGyver television show that was popular during the 80’s. The hero in the series could magically solve complex problems with simple items around him and his trusty Swiss Army Knife. That’s Hollywood. Carrying an all-purpose multi-tool can be a simple task, but give a huge payout. Even if it is as mundane as opening a can of food or cutting a piece of parachute cord to suit your needs, having a multi-tool with you will greatly increase your odds of survival.
Can you start a fire?
An open fire provides life saving heat, light, a method to cook food, a means to boil water and many other benefits. As anyone who has spent time camping can attest too, a warm fire at night also recharges your morale in ways that can’t be measured. Your ability to successfully start and control fire is at the core of primitive survival skills. One caveat: A fire can also attract people, animals and undead to your location, so be wise and discreet with how you use it.
What is your level of weapons training?
A weapon’s purpose, by design, is to extend the reach and increase the damage caused by a human’s attack. Melee weapons like knives, clubs and swords allow an opponent to get closer, but can cause catastrophic damage with one blow. Projectile weapons, like hand guns and rifles, maximize the distance between you and an enemy, but require a lot more training. You also have the burden of carrying plenty of ammunition. For centuries, soldiers have carried a combination of both types of weapons including firearms outfitted with bayonets. Before the dead come back to life you need to have an honest dialogue about your level of weapons training.
How would you rate your physical condition?
Zombieland hit this nail squarely on the head; cardio. You either have a decent level of fitness or you don’t at the dawn of the dead. Exercise has many benefits, such as increased strength and stamina, building resistance to common colds and improving your attitude (see below). You don’t have to be a Green Beret, but if you have a hard time standing on your feet for more than two hours at a time, it might be time to dust off the ol’ gym shoes and start getting some exercise.
Describe your attitude, is it more positive or negative?
Survival depends a great deal on a person’s ability to withstand stress in emergency situations, according to BackcountryAttitude.com. The will to survive, the ability to create goals and positive self-talk will be a common trait that survivors of a zombie apocalypse will all share. Clinical studies have shown that exercise outdoors, sex and laughter are the best ways to improve one’s positive outlook on life.
Do you know the basics of first aid?
Without a doubt, when you are running for your life from hordes of zombies, you (or someone with you) is going to sustain some injuries. It could be simple nicks, scratches and bruises, but may be more severe. Having the most elementary education in first aid is a great idea. Is it bleeding out? Stop it. Is it infected? Clean it. Is it broken? Immobilize it. Investing in a basic first aid kit and the knowledge to apply it sparingly will pay off dividends when you inevitably need it.
Do you have a plan?
The ability to act calmly in an emergency situation is paramount. Yet, you can’t keep your cool, if you don’t know what to do. Having a simple, basic plan, like who to call and where to go, could save your life. As we saw during the Ballistic missile alert in Hawaii, many people had no idea what to do or where to go. Locals and tourists alike, were running though the streets, discarding their vehicles and some just abandoned hope altogether. Waiting to die is not a winning strategy. Have a plan.
Are you persuasive?
Many zombie survival quizzes focus on physical attributes or primitive survival skills, i.e., ‘can you identify edible plants’, etc… Although a zombie holocaust would derail the fabric of our civilized society, likely remnants of it would prevail. If you are skilled in bartering goods or services, public speaking, or perhaps you can easily influence others, your chances of survival may be better than the most hardcore Boy Scout. Beware of false prophets though, as mobs will cast off an individual that they deem unworthy of leadership.
What are the lines that you won’t cross?
Lastly, one of the most difficult questions you need to ask yourself before a zombie apocalypse, is what are your personal limits? When a rugby team’s plane crashed into the Andes’ mountains, they resorted to cannibalism of dead teammates to survive. Could
you do that if you had too? Would you do that if you had too? These are personal reflections for extreme scenarios and there are no right or wrong answers. Maybe you have to choose between taking something closely attached to you or leaving it behind, like a beloved family pet. In war-torn countries, women have been known to offer sex acts for safe transportation or food for their children The Red Cross reports. While you might not know how you will react to hard questions until the grim reality is breathing down the nape of your neck, you can have a definitive code of ethics prior to TEOTWAWKI.