How much do you need to know to be prepared for emergencies? You only need to know enough to get through whatever happens in an emergency.
You can be the best preparedness expert in the world and something could happen to you that you are not ready for. Nothing is perfect and that includes preparedness. We all have to make do with doing the best we can.
You best tool for preparedness is your mind and your determination to do what is necessary to make it through an emergency. Once you have that, you will be amazed at what you can improvise when it is necessary.
I expect we all have our bucket list of things we would like to learn during our lifetimes. If most of your list is preparedness knowledge, then you may be in a situation to use some advice I have to give myself a lot: "The way to be happy with what I have is to get more or want less."
Knowledge is one of my biggest bottomless wants. That is why the internet has a special siren song for me. It is full of such good information that I can get lost in it and forget to come up for air. I believe that one can learn almost anything from the internet now. It is necessary to remember that one can't learn it all at once or even in one lifetime. We have to make choices and prioritize.
In an earlier post I wrote about using Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs to make decisions. A diagram of it was included so that you can print it out if necessary. Please leave the copyright information on it if you do, however. I made the chart myself so we would not infringe on anybody else's work.
Using Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs is a great way to work on your preparedness. Start at the bottom and work your way up. I like to have a long list of preparedness wants. This is because you never know what will show up in a thrift store, garage sale or even on the curb for garbage pickup. I have gotten wonderful storage containers for free from Freecycle.
The local hardware store had a great sale on 5 gallon buckets before I was quite ready to fill them. I got them anyway. I'd rather have the containers before the food to put in them, so that was really better than my plan.
You don't have to have food grade buckets if you use mylar bags to store the food in them, but I think it is a lot safer. The buckets from the hardware store are number 2 hdpe, which is food grade. I don't mind that they have the logo of the hardware store all over them.
Don't be discouraged at immensity of the task before you, if you are just starting out. You only need to be prepared for the emergency that you will face. You never know exactly what that will be.
I knew someone who had taken his first self defense class and learned one defensive move. He was attacked in a parking garage on the way home from the class. He used his one defensive move and it worked! He knew enough for the emergency that he faced.
Just get started on your preparedness. Whatever you have may be exactly what you need for the emergency that you will face.