Seriously, just what ARE you prepping for? I know that sounds like a silly question, with the obvious answer being ..... a DISASTER. In reality, if you are prepping, you are most likely prepping for a disaster of some kind. Question is, just what kind.
I have known people through the years who were prepping for all kinds of things ranging from economic collapse to invasions from governments (foreign or domestic) or even space aliens, to natural disasters such as earthquakes, volcanoes and asteroid strikes, and anything else imaginable. The prepping goals of some of these folks ranged from storing enough food and water to last at least a century, to building an arsenal that would make most small countries jealous, and almost everything between (and that is not an exaggeration).
Most of the above mentioned people were not wild eyed loons, they were just convinced that there would be a major disaster, and they intended to be prepared.. That is not to say I agree with their plans or what they believed was likely to happen. Narrow focus is the main thing I disagreed with in most cases. In fact, I think almost any of the scenarios they prepped for could happen and some probably will, but there is a consideration that if one disaster occurs, it could easily include several others. The trick is to make preparations that cross over to as many situations as possible. Lets face it, a good assault rifle may be great for keeping looters at bay, but it won't keep you warm, dry or fed on a regular basis (though it can be used for hunting).
By the same token, lots of stored food and water won't keep you safe from looters.
Whatever the disaster, there are some things that don't change. Food and drinking water are a must in any situation (disaster or not), as are shelter, warmth and some measure of defense. Whether that defense is accomplished with weapons, fortifications, diplomacy or simply hiding out until the danger passes, we all have to, in some way, protect ourselves, our families and our means of survival.
I grew up in a farm family and honestly can't remember when I started prepping. Being prepared was just a way of life on the farm because our livelihood was so tied to the forces of nature. A late freeze, hot dry summer, hail storm or heavy rain at the wrong time (just to name a few) could change the whole outlook. Growing up, we ate fresh produce from the garden in season, and home canned produce through the winter. There are plenty of references as to how much should be stored per person for the winter, but there was always the push to put up more, especially in a good year. The rule of thumb was to have enough at the end of the season to last three years, simply because some years things just don't produce as expected, so when they do, you put up enough for when they don't. This is a concept that has followed me through life, and to good benefit. Though the garden and orchard are not yet producing enough to store for long term, when there is plenty of money for food, I buy more than needed and store it. Staples like beans, rice, flour, corn meal and canned goods store well and I always try to keep some stocked up.
Now to the point of my question. As you probably know, I finally found a job about a month ago. This was after a prolonged period of searching and not finding, which had left finances almost completely depleted. By almost completely, I mean to the point that bills were behind and I had to count change for gas to get back and forth to work until my first full paycheck. There was not money for food and gas so I had to choose one. Not being able to buy food is a disaster in any body's book, or at least should be. However, thanks to prepping, there was no disaster simply because I had enough food stored to eat well for that period of time and beyond. Had I not prepped for such a disaster, I would have been much thinner after three weeks, or I would have bought food and lost my new job. Either way, I am glad I did not have to make that choice.
The bottom line is that whatever monstrous disaster you are prepping for, don't neglect the lesser, more personal disasters that can happen at any time and just as suddenly as the big ones.