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The Fundamentals of Survival in Hostile Environments

The Fundamentals of Survival in Hostile Environments

The Essential Principles for Taming Hostile Environments in Survival Situations.

Welcome, intrepid adventure seekers and challenge seekers! In the vast survival manual, there are principles that are important to know. 

Each letter of the acronym S.U.R.V.I.E. will reveal to you here the essential principles and know-how in a survival situation. From the bold handling of situations to the astute use of resources, from strategic scouting to the will to live, from cunning improvisation to mischievous imitation, and finally, from the teaching and training that enables improvement related knowledge and skills has the survival.

Get ready to explore these fundamentals, to study them, to memorize them, because who knows, they might just become a valuable aid if you ever face the challenge of a survival situation.


Use your senses: hearing, smell, sight, to assess the situation. To establish your survival plan, you must determine how the situation is evolving.

Evaluate the environment. Try to understand what is happening around you. Every environment has its characteristics. Observe and listen to the movements and sounds of animals, birds, insects. You can also perceive human activity.

Under the stress of difficulties, you may not have assessed possible injuries. Examine your body, treat your wounds. Be careful to prevent further physical trauma: in all climates, drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration. In cold or humid climates, cover up to avoid hypothermia.

In the heat of battle, you may have lost or damaged your equipment. Take inventory and inspect what you own.

You have now taken stock of the situation: environment, physical condition and equipment. You are ready to make your survival plan. Don’t forget your three basic needs: water, food, shelter.


Your first resource is your judgment. Think before you act; a hasty reaction can lead to your death. Don't give in to fear or panic: they are your worst enemies. They can push you to listen to your feelings or your imagination rather than your common sense. By draining your energy, they can increase your stress and make the situation worse. If you have received training in survival skills, you will have confidence in yourself and will be better equipped to combat fear and panic.

Use all your senses; notice noises and smells, pay attention to temperature changes, observe your surroundings. Consider all aspects of the situation before making a decision. If you act hastily, you risk losing or forgetting your equipment; you also risk losing your bearings and becoming disoriented.


Locate your position on the map and on the ground. Spotting is a basic principle that you should always follow. If you are not alone, make sure your companions also know their way around. You should always know who in the group has a map and compass. If this person is dead, you must collect their map and compass. Pay close attention to your position and direction. Don't rely on others for direction. You must always know where you come from and where you are going.

Try to constantly determine your position, at least in relation to the following:

  • Location of water points (particularly important information in the desert).
  • Areas that can provide shelter.

This information will allow you to make rational decisions in a survival situation.


Every birth is a struggle, but eventually we get used to easy life and comfort. We flee discomfort and difficulty. But what happens when we find ourselves in a survival situation, and we are faced with stress, difficulty, discomfort and danger? This is where the will to live comes into play.

The experience and knowledge that life brings strengthens your will to live. Tenacity - the refusal to give in to problems and obstacles - will give you the mental and physical strength necessary to overcome the challenge.


In our daily lives, we have all the objects necessary to meet our slightest needs, and we replace them as soon as they no longer do the job.

Take advantage of the natural objects around you. See how they can meet your different needs. For example, a rock can become a hammer.

Even if you have a complete survival kit, it will lose its effectiveness after a while. Your imagination will have to make up for the lack of tools. Resourcefulness can be learned. Imitate the people and animals of the region. They are adapted to their environment. To understand how people live, observe them in their daily lives. How and when do they feed? How, when and where do they get their food? When and where do they get water? What time do they get up and go to bed?

The animals of the region can also give you ideas. Just like you, they need water, food and shelter. By observing them, you can find sources of food and water. But don't rely entirely on animals for food and drink. Many animals consume plants that are toxic to humans.

In a populated area, you can build relationships with residents by looking at their tools and how they obtain water and food.

By studying their way of life, you will learn to respect them, you will often make valuable friends, and above all you will learn to adapt to their environment and thus increase your chances of survival.


If you have not received the necessary training in survival skills, your chances of surviving are slim.

Now is the time to learn these basic skills – not at the start and not in the heat of battle. Your survival will be conditioned by the baggage you have equipped yourself with before the start of the maneuvers. You must study the environment you will find yourself in, and you must practice the techniques appropriate for that environment. For example, if you go to the desert, you need to know how to find water there.

Throughout your training, practice the survival skills taught to you. This teaching will ease your fear of the unknown and give you confidence in your abilities. Thanks to the teaching received, you will be able to make the best use of your personal resources.

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