SELCO: Pay Attention Because Your “New Normal” Should Be Survival Mode

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Author of The Dark Secrets of SHTF Survival and the online course SHTF Survival Boot Camp

In one of the articles a few weeks ago I mentioned stuff about adapting, and I used “boiling the frog” story as an example of how situations that slowly deteriorate can make us lose our sharpness.

We get accustomed to situations, things, or actions, and we have a tendency to portray it over time as normal.

Here are a few more thoughts.

“Nah, it is OK”

In a country where the economic situation was horrible even before this whole coronavirus thing, you do not need some large event to push things in a bad direction, and COVID hit us pretty hard.

Medical staff members have worked in bad conditions from the start of this, in double shifts, without proper equipment, and with the perspective of even more salary cuts because of the worsening economic situation.

At the beginning of all this, if a medical worker got into contact with a positive patient without PPE, he or she would go into self-isolation at home and be tested. As the situation deteriorates more (more medical workers getting sick, fewer tests and equipment) it got to the point where the medical worker (if in contact, without PPE)) does not get tested and does not go into isolation until symptoms show up. So in reality, until getting symptoms he would freely spread the disease to coworkers, family, and patients until he was actually sick.

Now the situation looks like this: If a medical worker gets sick, tested positive, and only has mild symptoms-he should work normally, with a mask. If masks are available. Usually, they are not.

One more thing is that now medical officials are instructing workers, “Nah, it is nothing, you just continue to work.” In other words, you work or lose the job.

In some cities, there are internal instructions that police workers and medical workers are forbidden to be tested. If they are not tested they are not sick, right?

All this is being performed as a push in order to make the system look like it is still OK so that ordinary people are still able to function. In reality, it is a catastrophe waiting to happen.

And one more thing: all this does not have anything to do with whether you believe in COVID or not or how you think this is all this gonna end up.

It is about the system pushing on and on to look like they’re functioning to the outside world. It is about how all may end up in disaster with the complete destruction of some important services.

Image or illusion is all that is important.

“New Normal” vs. “Normal”

I wrote a lot about adapting to something they’re calling the “new normal”.

New normal means that one day you will wake up in a different world. You will realize that you are living in new world. A new world means new rules. In our case, because we are talking about prepping and survival, it means mostly that from that moment you need to go into survival mode.

Now that does not necessarily mean that you need to go out on streets in full camo with an assault rifle. There are levels of it.

It can mean that from that day you are adopting a whole set of new rules and actions because you realized things have changed, and you need, for example, to watch where you go, to have a bag of essentials with you, to be ready to bug out, to know all the time where your family members are, etc, etc.

I know, I know. You are over there saying that we all need to do that all the time anyway because we are preppers.

But in reality, we can not always live in that “survival mode” because it is impossible. You should know when to switch to it.

Again, you are switching to it because you RECOGNIZE it is time for that and that the situation has become the NEW NORMAL for you, so you are living in some level of SURVIVAL MODE.

It is very important to recognize that new normal so you can switch to the proper mode.

Now, there is the term NORMAL.

If you are living for some time in a changed situation, in a hard situation, or simply in a prolonged period of time in special circumstances, you as a human have a chance to adapt to it, so it will become NORMAL to you. Also, there is a very high possibility that the system will push its own agenda very hard telling you, bombarding you actually, with information that it is NORMAL, or it will soon be NORMAL, or at least telling you, “Oh no, it is not so bad.”

There is a chance over time that the situation will become normal to you and you will have failed to switch yourself into survival mode, because why should you, everybody saying all is normal around you right?

So you will continue to live in those not-so-normal times like they are normal.

You will adapt to those times in a way that you will not be prepared for full SHTF because you are not going to see it.

It isn’t as complicated as it seems.

All this may look complicated, but in essence, it is not at all. It can be summarized in a few points at the end:

Remember, “normal” is something that you should be able to define by yourself, not from what that guy on TV says. You must be able to quickly move into the correct mode and adapt to the “new normal” if it happens.

And don’t think it can’t happen to you. I believe it is happening in many places.

About Selco:

Selco survived the Balkan war of the 90s in a city under siege, without electricity, running water, or food distribution. 

In his online works, he gives an inside view of the reality of survival under the harshest conditions. He reviews what works and what doesn’t, tells you the hard lessons he learned, and shares how he prepares today. He never stopped learning about survival and preparedness since the war. Regardless of what happens, chances are you will never experience extreme situations as Selco did. But you have the chance to learn from him and how he faced death for months.

Real survival is not romantic or idealistic. It is brutal, hard and unfair. Let Selco take you into that world.

Picture of Selco


Selco survived the Balkan war of the 90s in a city under siege, without electricity, running water, or food distribution. In his online works, he gives an inside view of the reality of survival under the harshest conditions. He reviews what works and what doesn’t, tells you the hard lessons he learned, and shares how he prepares today. He never stopped learning about survival and preparedness since the war. Regardless what happens, chances are you will never experience extreme situations as Selco did. But you have the chance to learn from him and how he faced death for months. Read more of Selco's articles here. Buy his PDF books here. Take advantage of a deep and profound insight into his knowledge by signing up for his unrivaled online course. Real survival is not romantic or idealistic. It is brutal, hard and unfair. Let Selco take you into that world.

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  • Thank you Selco for a great reminder to not get complacent. I’ve found myself off and on lately almost being lulled into a mindset of “I’ve got this” when infact I do not. I still have alot more I want to stock and train for. Scheduling time to train with new defensive equipment, in addition to bulking up supplies and equipment, all while giving a front of blending in, just being another “regular Joe”, can be difficult to maintain.
    Have found myself shutting off that voice that I should be listening to, so thank you for the reminder, time to be aware and awake to the slow insidious changes going on.

  • Camo might not help and you might not need to carry a rifle when you go out but over here you’d better. That’s our new reality at least until after the first of the year. Covid has slid back in priority of the direct impact threats right now.
    I can’t catch the bug if my brains are bashed in, I’m shot or burned out because I’m wearing a mask or not wearing a mask or my color or political affiliation or job or if someone doesn’t want to wait in line at staples or social distance and not invade my personal space by touching or pushing.
    Yeah I check way too many boxes to be safe. Straight, long term married, white, law enforcement, working, lean to the right, don’t kneel to man nor apologize for history, don’t watch sports, drive a pickup, retired military, don’t do dope and believe in America.
    It’s hard to even let my mom or wife go shop alone the way the thugs act anymore in the cities. You can’t hardly drive the highway without someone acting up. Everyone is “special” and “entitled”.
    Handgun with 2 spares, knife/OC and rifle with kit in truck.
    You might get me but you’ll work for it.
    It’s not as bad here as it was there in the Balkans but the path is clearly laid. I recognize it even after all these years.
    I’ll be in survival oh S… mode for a while.

    • Hello again Matt. I agree with you 100% again! I just replied to you on another site. And camo is normal everyday wear here in West by God Virginia as well. Oh ya and bibles and guns. Live in a holler full of hillbilly preppers. Almost Heaven.

      • I’m far from a heavenly outlook here. Is what it is.
        I’m glad your in a good spot. I’m hoping and praying for the best for all but ain’t counting on it.

  • The new normal is always be prepared for not live in a state of fear!enjoy what life you have left. When it’s over and it will be,just hope it’s fast.

  • Great article, Selco. I’m still struggling with what to put in everyday carry vs. a bug out bag vs. an INCH bag. I know it’s so dependent on personal needs, abilities, region, weather, and current situational circumstances, and I tend to pack too much!

  • In truth, we’ve been in a “Cold” Civil War for quite some time now, we’ve yet to have the Fort Sumter moment that will start the real armed conflict with the antagonists pushing for this. As Thomas Paine said “…Let it come in my time, so my children will be free.”
    At 60, and in declining health, but still a good shot, I’ll be the “Auld Fart” in the pile of brass.
    Cuimhnich Có Leis A Tha Thu!

  • Selco my friend, this sounds like the beginnings of your last crisis… media kept saying everything was fine right up until the day the tanks rolled into your town. It’s the same here… they keep telling us this is the “new normal”, and will continue saying so right up until martial law is declared. ????
    You are right, we should remain prepared, ready, vigilant, and trust the instincts God gave you… they are for your preservation. Declining dollar value is not normal… wearing masks for over half a year is not normal… being told how/where/when you can go places is not normal… businesses that used to be open 24/7 now closing at 8PM is not normal… scores of people on unemployment is not normal… riots/burning/looting/attacking police, buildings, historic monuments, random civilians, mobs stomping people to death… is not normal. Guns being sold out everywhere is not normal.
    All this time that we can’t go to the movies, the mall, fly to vacations, etc…. we should be using it to prepare and constantly refine and improve our preps amd our plans.
    Whatever happens during the election, things will get worse. If one side wins, there will be celabratory rioting followed by government oppression and lawless/violent streets. If the other side wins, there will be vehement rioting by the losing side, followed by martial law and suppression of rights “for the sake of law and order”. Either way, it will be hell and oppression. so we had best make ready now.
    Increase your stashes of vital items. Make your vehicle ready. Stash cash. Be able to protect yourself whever you go. Know alternate routes. Have friends you can get to. Know/be able to perform basic medical. Keep your mouth shut and your eyes/ears open. Dress like you have nothing going on. Don’t stand out, but don’t look like a sheep either. Get into the best physical shape you can, focusing on endurance.
    Knowledge and capability = competance and confidence. There will never be a time when being in shape, well stocked with money amd supplies, and keeping all that secret will be bad. Even in good times, being in that condition is good.
    Don’t count on “the system”… it doesn’t care about you… it cares about itself. It doesn’t even know you exist, so don’t be surprised when it’s not there for you in times of trouble.
    Count on yourself and others you have come to trust over the years… those that are smart, prepared, and have control of themselves and their tongues. And always pray for guidance.
    Best of luck to you all. May God preserve us.

    • Don’t count on “the system”… it doesn’t care about you… it cares about itself. It doesn’t even know you exist, so don’t be surprised when it’s not there for you in times of trouble.

      I really like that statement.

  • The unsafe environment that has metastasized in many Socialist Democrat controlled cities is really all the warning anyone living there should require to “bug out” already. What more could any aware person need to know that its time to go…. a personal message hand delivered saying, “OK, its time. Now go!” Even preppers can be infected with the normalcy bias (or should it be “virus”?), refusing to see the facts for themselves and wait until it too late.

    I don’t believe staying in survival mode is sustainable long-term if we want to keep our mental and physical health. Slid in to it when its needed, and learn to recognize when its needed. But you will require someplace that will allow you to put it aside regularly in order to maintain balance.

    Frankly, from all I have read and researched I don’t think many… maybe any… of us will come out the other side of what on its way. We can prepare to extend out stay a bit, but if you consider yourself to be a patriotic American, are a Christian, and especially if you are White, the opposition wants us GONE, and will try to make it so when given the chance.

  • IMHO, survival mode depends on ones surroundings.
    In some of the more urban areas, where there have been prolonged protests, rioting, looting and arson, ones survival mode is much higher than those of us out in the sticks.
    Granted, that does not mean that same level of violence could not come to the surrounding suburbs of a urban area or even out here in the sticks.
    However, as the presidential election gets closer, the possibility of further social/civil unrest cannot be ruled out.
    For many, it may not be direct impact of said social/civil unrest. But the interruption of commerce, food supply, fuel supply, could.
    That is the kind of survival mode some may have to take vs the riots, looting and arson we have seen in the news.
    While prudent to be ready for the most likely threats, remain flexible enough to not get locked into a ridged mindset.

    Murphy is always lurking.

  • Thank you Selco. This hit that big question mark spot with the exact coordinates I was looking for. How can we know for certain? We can’t. But readiness is called for in these weirdo times where the Globaleets are looking to outsmart everyone and send them to their doom. It can all turn on a dime without any notice. The MSM is not our guide. The tea leaves are not our guide. Being able to look at everything circumspectly and understand normal/new normal is no guide — is at least one step in the right direction.

    There is much to be grateful for — especially being able to breathe without fear snagging our breath. Preparedness is love in action. It is leadership. It is wisdom.

  • Thanks selco, great article.
    What I’ve personally noticed is the mass of people aren’t coping and need to everything to be normal. Where as people that have faced real trauma over a period of time, find it easier to slip into survival mode . It’s like a retained body memory and happens. I live in a pretty bad part of town and most of the folks around me are coping just fine. I drive to a middle class area and everyone seems in denial . Normally smart intelligent people are putting themselves at risk to go get their normal sausages as they can’t get them delivered online . I’ve tried to help family & friends. I’ve given up. No one knows what I have prepped or doing or how much I’m training.
    And I agree with Matt, make them work for it.

  • Oh bullshit. Anyone in the health care industry is ordered to stay home for at least two weeks with pay by law. Only after a negative test result can they return. Typical fearmongering to sell your stuff. Done with Selco.

    • Ben –

      1) What is Selco selling?
      2) Are you currently in the Balkans providing your own first-hand knowledge of this?

      Thanks for announcing your departure. Happy trails!

      • Has reading comprehension really gone that far to the way side?
        Or is this a result of the 30 second or less MSM sound bite that is what passes as the informed American nowadays?

        • This is your comprehension. This is your comprehension on drugs. Lol
          I’m actually seeing a lot of this emotional outburst at everything these days.

    • You are flat wrong. I personally know an emergency room rn who got flagrantly exposed on the job and was told to continue working unless and until he showed symptoms. Your desire to disbelieve is misplaced in this case.


    • “Us” as in is in the Balkans where Selco lives. Do you live in the Balkans? If no read it again so you comprehend what he says.

      • I went back and re-read it.
        While he does not explicitly state he is living in Bosnia, in the first few paragraphs you can figure out he is not talking about the US.
        Daisy might want to update his bio, not that people would read it.

  • Just an FYI our local Walmart had no limit Lysol yesterday.
    Not a bad thing to have irregardless of your feeling or thoughts on covid because theres lots of other bugs and flu season coming.
    Don’t forget the daycares and schools if you’ve got kids or grandkids.

  • What country are you referring to? There are no shortages of masks, and other ppe wherever I have been. As for testing, I see no need until the tests are demonstrated to be reliable. They have not.

  • Hey Selco, I saw your interview with Fernando Ferfal Aguirre on YouTube. I’ve interviewed Fernando on my show twice, and I asked him to connect me with you.

    He said this is the best place to get hold of you. So here I am.

    My show is Civil Defense Radio at

    I sure would enjoy the opportunity to have you on the show and give us some realism in our preparedness.

    I hope to talk soon.


  • Hey Selco, i think practicing by living ” in alert mode” is a good thing. When you constantly live it, it wont be so hard to actually do it when the times comes. As far as Camouflage goes, Id say it wouldnt be a good idea, unless your trying to live in the wilderness. In major cities or populated areas, youd stick out like a sore thumb….

    Thanks for writing this.

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