When it comes to being self-reliant these days, many assume that stocking up on necessities is the most important aspect for being prepared and surviving what is to come. As we grow more conscious of our surroundings we learn that we actually ask for certain things to come into our life (both fortunate and unfortunate) by the way we live our life.

As we prepare ourselves for the future, we often forget about these four key aspects that we could improve on to help us thrive going forward instead of merely just surviving. These key aspects include working toward physical well-being, building healthy relationships and community, achieving financial independence and living in spiritual freedom.

Physical well-being

The first aspect we will look at involves physical well-being. As we become self-reliant, learning how to grow our own food and store more, we emotionally begin to reconnect with nature and bond with the root of our character — responsibility and personal liberty. Instead of stressing about an economic collapse or the loss of a job, we can become confident in our evolving skill set and our backup plan to provide food.

It’s better to sleep well than live in a state of worry.

In all our preparation and self-improvements, we must learn to let go of the bad habits that consume our priorities and bring us down each step of the way. Preparing our cardiovascular system with a daily dose of exercise might be a more important than having a bug-out bag and a bug-out plan in case of an emergency. If we are not physically well and capable, then what are we really worth in an emergency, even if we have everything we need right in our bag? Maybe it’s time to cut out the nicotine or the sugar or whatever grips us so we can build up our immune system.

Independence from pharmaceutical drugs and the medical system is one of the freest feelings one can experience in our society today.

Building relationships

The second aspect that we often overlook in our preparations is our connection with friends, family and the community. It’s easy to prepare and deal with things by our self, alone. We may set aside a portion of our paycheck to stock up on the supplies that we think we might need in a survival situation. We may buy lots of bullets for self-defense. We may store lots of water. We may think that we are being self-reliant; however, going it alone and thinking selfishly in our preparations will never serve our happiness, dignity or freedom in the end.

Sharing experiences with others is the only way to thrive. Learning to work in a team or with a tribe helps retain trust and compassion among people. When one in the group is weak, the others can pick that person up.

Utilising, delegating and compensating weaknesses and strengths among a group of people is key. Do you know your neighbours? How will you defend not only you, but your friends and family? Will everyone have enough water?

Financial independence

A third part of self-reliance that we seem to forget is financial independence. Are we consuming more than we are producing?

Are we borrowing more than we are giving? The borrower is always slave to the lender.

Owing no one anything is one of the most freeing sensations in an economy founded in debt.

We are socially conditioned to live beyond our means and purchase materials we don’t have enough money for. We enslave ourselves using these poor man’s principles. If our lifestyle revolves around making a bank richer with interest and monthly payments, then what have we become? What are we really working for? Without debt to pay, we can honestly give and invest in the lives of others – lifting each other beyond what was once impossible.

Spiritual freedom

A fourth part of self-reliance we often neglect as we get caught up surviving in our materialistic world is spiritual freedom. Merely surviving here on Earth is not man’s end game. We are not just a body; we are actually a spirit. The body is just here to represent us physically on Earth. When our physicality reaches the end of its clock, the spirit comes to the forefront.

We are eternal right now, present on Earth, masquerading in our fleshy appearances. How we seek spiritual freedom is up to us.

The most freeing sensation people witness for achieving spiritual freedom is humbling one self to the healing power of forgiveness.

This power is available to us straight from the source that created our spirit. We all must look inside ourselves and determine whether we need forgiveness for our shortcomings on Earth or whether we should hold on to our pride, not needing love at all.

That’s why I believe relying on one’s self is worthless if we cannot ask for forgiveness as we ascend through our spiritual journey here on Earth and into forever…