Survival Expert ™

Survival Expert James Mandeville.

James Mandeville is an international author and columnist writing on survival and survival related issues.

James Mandeville's Bio:
  • Scottish.
  • Married.
  • Jungle, Arctic and Desert survival expert.
  • Keen explorer.
  • Graduate Psychologist and Master of Business Administration.
Many years experience in difficult terrain, notably the Amazon, the African bush and climbing in various mountain regions including the Drakensburg Mountains and the Andes; in all these places my survival knowledge has proved to be invaluable.

I refined my extreme survival skills in the jungles of Belize and in Brunei, in the Namib Desert and in the mountains of Kenya and South Africa. I developed these survival skills in Europe, the African bush, the sub–Arctic, in the Caribbean and through everyday life experience. I have survived drought and flooding, injury, getting lost in the jungle, an attack by starving lions, cerebral malaria and a tropical cyclone. So, I guess I've had a good share of survival experiences — time will tell!

I wrote survival books initially for military personnel who had not undergone elite survival training to understand what they could experience both physically and psychologically in a survival situation or in the aftermath of a disaster. This concept was expanded to include survival in civilian situations, initially for the families of those serving but, of course, for anyone interested in learning survival skills.

About the Survival Expert website
My mission is to pass on my survival knowledge through my writing to help and encourage others. However much you think you know about survival there is always more to learn, so you should read everything you can on the subject, I hope the free articles on this site are an inspiration and education to those interested in survival.

What makes a true survivor?
Passive learning is very valuable, but there can be no substitute for practical experience. Trying out survival skills is essential so one knows how to use them if the need arises. Survival knowledge must be on the backbone because there is rarely time to sit down and read a survival guide if you are in the middle of the real thing!

We all learn from each other, and every person's life experience is just as valuable as the next person's life experience. I created Survival Expert to share my knowledge as a psychologist, survival expert and a fellow human being. We no longer live in tribes where survival knowledge is passed down through the generations. In modern times, we commit our knowledge to books and the Internet and I think it important that survival knowledge is not lost just because we (in the West) live in soft times of plenty. People with the best chance of surviving anything are those who know their own psychology is in order and have an in–depth knowledge of how to survive anywhere; I firmly believe this to be true.

We carry the same personal psychology with us into a survival situation that we had before life suddenly turned upside down. Few people really know themselves unless they have considerable life experience, have put themselves to the test or been tested by life, and ideally have undergone therapy to deal with the psychological baggage that we all carry with us. From my many years as a survival instructor I know that the person who will win through any challenge, however demanding, is the one in control of his or her own psychology. However knowledgeable, tough or fit you are, unless you understand how you are most likely to think and react in a survival situation, you are at an enormous disadvantage should the worst happen to you.

Unless you practice survival skills such knowledge is passive and you may end up trying out things for the first time when disaster happens for real. The first few choices you make could mean the difference between life and death so you need to focus and think carefully before deciding on a course of action. The more skilled you are in basic survival, the greater your chances of actually surviving.

  • Your own psyche is the best survival tool you possess;
  • understanding how you may possibly think and act in a survival situation is the best form of preparedness. The first few choices you make are often critical, so you have to focus from the outset;
  • knowing yourself is being forearmed;
  • knowing what you may face is being forewarned;
  • dealing with the distorted aspects of one's own psyche before a disaster occurs will vastly enhance anyone's chances of survival;
  • learn all you can about survival, but take care to learn from trusted sources of information. But be careful, there is a lot of dubious information out there — especially on the World Wide Web!

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