One Step At A Time

If you haven’t started to put together an emergency plan and the reason is that you feel overwhelmed by the complexity of the project, then break it down into smaller steps. Just take one step at a time. Any preparation you make will put you one step ahead of the rest of the population. And any preparation you make will make it easier for you to survive a disaster.

So, what’s your first step? How about simply thinking about how you would reconnect with your family and friends if a disaster were to strike. Think about it this way, suppose there was a tornado that touched down in your neighborhood. You came through it okay, but your home is completely destroyed. How would you let your family members know you’re okay? If you have three children you want to contact, and a stranger is willing to let you use his phone for one call, who would you call? And, if you have multiple children, how can you let them know you’re okay too, especially if your first call goes unanswered?

Designing a communication plan doesn’t have to be that difficult. Think about a family member or friend that everyone in your family knows and has their phone number or email address. Make sure all your family members know this is the person to contact if something happens. That friend or family member will let all the others know you’re okay if you contact them. Each of your family members should know that person’s contact information.

Then take one more step: choose a place you can meet if something happens just in your home. If your home had a fire, where would you meet? Perhaps it’s at the end of your driveway, or across the street. It has to be somewhere close where you can gather to make sure you are all accounted for and are all okay. Every member of your family needs to know where that is too.

Okay, that’s the beginning of making your communications plan. You can expand it next week by thinking of someone out of town you can use to connect with if the person in your immediate area isn’t available. Designing a plan does not have to be a horrendous project. Take it one step at a time, and write down what you decide as you go. Pretty soon, you’ll have your entire plan mapped out.