Four Things You Should Stop Throwing Away

How many would-be preppers are letting their income dictate whether or not they start taking the right steps toward self-sustained independence? The hidden beauty of prepping is that you can get started without spending a single dime. True, you’re not going to build an impressive survivalist fortress without coming off some dough, but every little bit counts. You can get started just by hanging on to some of the things you typically throw away.

Here are four things you should start collecting:

Empty Cans

Next time you pour the contents of a soup can into a bowl, don’t be so hasty to throw out the can. Get rid of the jagged top, clean out the can, and put it away. With your old cans, you can rig up a makeshift alarm system across your lawn, put them to use in various forms of cooking, and utilize them as small storage containers.

Bath Towels

You’re probably in the habit of throwing out those old bath towels that have been chewed to rags by years of bleaching. Next time you do a purge, save the ragged towels that embarrass you when company visits. They may not be good enough for the master bathroom, but they’re good enough for a survival situation. And hey, if that “situation” turns out to be nothing more serious than a flooding dishwasher, you’ll still be glad you don’t have to use the “good” towels.

Paper Clips

Paper clips are cheap, plentiful, and disposable. But if you’re serious about prepping, you have to remember that you may have a finite supply of these versatile little tools. You may not need to organize reports in a SHTF scenario, but you can use paper clips to sew, fish, and even broaden the scope of your radio transmissions.


A lot of people keep a few old socks around in the garage; they make convenient rags for checking the oil as well as dusting the house. They can also be useful in a survival situation. Rags in general could be of great use, but socks in particular make excellent water filters. For sediment, mind you, not bacteria.

But this is just the tip of the iceberg. Take this as a starting point. Start looking at everything in your home through a different lens. You will find that you already own many things that will serve you well in a crisis.