| The Survivors Club: The Secrets and Science that Could Save Your Life|
By Ben Sherwood
All right, let me go to Ben Sherwood. And Ben, I have to blame -- I got trashed by Geraldo Rivera this morning on television and it's because of you.
SHERWOOD: (Laughing). My apologies.
GLENN: I was doing the show. In fact, you're part of the show tonight. We're doing the TV show tonight on "Think the Unthinkable." What's the worst possible scenario. We're war gaming tonight on what America could go through in the next few years, and this idea really came from you. Geraldo Rivera said on television this morning, he said, "Oh, this is ridiculous. What good comes out of war gaming? What good comes out of looking at all of the different possibilities that could happen." You tell me, Ben. What good could come out of thinking of possibilities with some of the best and brightest minds and playing a war game?
SHERWOOD: Well, you just ask 150 people who were on an airplane that landed on the Hudson a few weeks ago. They never imagined that their plane would go down on the Hudson, and they somehow through all kinds of leadership of a few passengers, a pilot and a crew, they managed to get off that plane. That is not an easy thing because as we've discussed before, most people when they see a plane with a wing on fire, they have nothing in their memory bank. They have nothing to draw upon to know how to act in that situation, and the result is what scientists call behavioral inaction. That is, they do nothing. And so by sounding the alarms, by telling people about what could happen out there in this country, the economy, all sorts of challenges that we face and we know we face, by sounding the alarm, you are basically putting into people's minds the scenarios that when those scenarios arise, they have a fighting chance of dealing with them.
GLENN: You know, you sent me the quiz for your book. By the way, the name of the book is The Survivors Club. It's fantastic. You have to read it, especially in these times. It's just -- and by the way, congratulations on being New York Times best seller.
SHERWOOD: Well, thank you for that, Glenn.
GLENN: You sent me a poll to take. Can you tell me what it even means? I took this, I took this survey and then it tells you what kind of person you are. It said that I was a fighter. What does that mean?
SHERWOOD: So the typical person has what is called -- most people are not wired to deal with the low probability/high consequence events. That means that most of us are not wired to deal with the kinds of crises that pop up in life. And what I did when I went out and interviewed survivors around the world to try to figure out what the most effective survivors do whenever they're challenged, whether it's a medical crisis or an economic challenge, I found that they share certain common personality traits and they share an outlook and a lens, sort of a mentality for dealing with a challenge. And so what we did was we created the world's first profiler. It's a personality test that lives on the Internet and that's on your website. It takes a couple of minutes to take it and it's --
GLENN: It's on the website now? I didn't even know. It's on GlennBeck.com right now?
SHERWOOD: It's going to be on GlennBeck.com. Your producer told me as soon as we're done, he'll put it up. So you can take a quiz that will take them what their survivor type is. I'm not surprised at all, Glenn, to hear that you're a fighter. Fighters are people who, with a real sense of purpose -- and by the way, in the last segment you mentioned sort of the purpose of being here, a real sense of purpose, a real sense --
GLENN: Hang on. We're up against a break. Hang on. I want you to describe, finish the fighter thing but I want you to describe all the other levels of it as well. Hang on. Back with Ben Sherwood, author of Survivors Club. Unbelievable book. More in a second.
GLENN: 888-727-BECK. So Ben Sherwood is really the inspiration for this show tonight bus it's a war game show. What is the unthinkable, what does this look like if it goes really, really bad on us, the economy and everything else. And Ben told me on the air, the author of Survivors Club that the people who have thought things through or thought the unthinkable were really, that was one key component in surviving. Tell me about the different kinds of survivors. You have this survivor IQ test that's up at GlennBeck.com right now where you can take it, find out what category you're in. Explain the categories and then we'll -- explain what it means. Dan is a believer. Stu is a thinker, and I'm a fighter.
SHERWOOD: So what we found is that there are five basic survivor personalities and we all fall into one of these categories and so we created the survivor profiler which asks the short quick version which is on your website, produces a very quick glimpse of your survivor personality. Readers of the book get a code to take a deeper, longer test that produces around a 10-page customized report on your specific survivor strengths and your specific survivor talents. But the types, a fighter, Glenn. A fighter is a purpose-driven, mission-driven character like Lance Armstrong, somebody who guts it out, pushes and fights their way through a particular problem.
A thinker is a person who uses intelligence, common sense, street smarts, sort of their mind to think their way and analyze their way through a problem, not the same kind of mission-driven, fighter, resilient, tenacious personality. More of a cerebral person who works their way with thoughts through a problem. That's not --
GLENN: Wait, wait. Hang on. Wouldn't it be better to be a thinker than a fighter?
SHERWOOD: Fighters -- so here's the thing. These aren't mutually exclusive because I'm about to tell you, for instance, that there's a survivor type called a believer, and I know that you're a person of faith and a believer. What we measure for in this test is what is the dominant quality that is your leading quality. It doesn't mean that you aren't a thinker.
GLENN: There were several times that I went, well -- there was one question where I thought, well, no, I would step back -- first I would say, where are the exits. And then I would look at everything and I would evaluate and then I would also pray at the same time. So is that why I was -- I was torn on which one to do and I just went with what would be the first thing I would do.
SHERWOOD: That's exactly right. See, the test and the reason why it has a very high accuracy and the longer version that comes with the book is even more accurate is that we put these questions to you that are not -- it's not an either/or because we are all lots of these different qualities together. And what we're measuring for is what is your dominant trait in a situation. What is sort of the thing you would lead with. Again it doesn't mean that you don't also rely on prayer and brains. There's also a realist survivor type. That's a person who is incredibly pragmatic and practical. And there's also a connector personality type, and the connector is someone who relies on their social network and their bonds with others and their ability in social situations, they are a people person, to get through a problem. And this has -- we tested this on the real survivors in the book, we tested this on real people in the population. The accuracy level is very high. And Geraldo's point, Geraldo giving you grief this morning for raising these questions, everybody knows that we're going to get slammed by something in life, whether it's a medical diagnosis or a pink slip. We all know that crisis is inevitable and you are only putting your head in the sand if you don't want to think about those situations. The advantage that a person needs by knowing their survivor type, the advantage that they have in watching your show this afternoon and war gaming what could happen is that you have a plan and you have framed in your mind, you've started to rewire yourself to deal with the fact that bad things happen and. That's the person in the United States who studied the way people respond and the crisis. And the problem is that we just aren't wired to deal with these. I live in California. I live on one of the most active earthquake fault lines in the world and in California they have managed to. They have to pursue it at home in the event of an earthquake. And we have a pair of tennis shoes, in our ca rs in the event of an earthquake. They have begun to rewire to live with the reality that the big one could be coming and that's why it's important to have a program like this afternoon, this evening on your show to talk about what are people going to do when these low probability, high consequence events come and it seems that these events are becoming more and more probable. They are not so low probability anymore.
GLENN: Ben, is there a better, is there one that we -- a survivor type that we should be striving for? Is there one that has a better potential of surviving? Is there --
SHERWOOD: No. No, Glenn. What I found in looking at a lot of these different crises and situations --
GLENN: Explain for people who don't know what The Survivors Club is, the book that you did, explain real quick what you did.
SHERWOOD: The Survivors Club is a book. The thesis is that we're all members of this invisible fellowship and that we're all dealing with problems in our families and problems in our cities and we're all suffering from cancer or from illness or from economic distress or we're all car crashes, and I went out and interviewed survivors and experts to analyze what are the things that the most effective survivors know and how can we, the rest of us, get some of those things in advance of whatever we're going to face. And that's what I went out to do with The Survivors Club. And what I think we found out is that there's this mentality, there's this outlook, and all of us can prepare ourselves. I'm not advocating stockpiling canned goods.
GLENN: Sure, not living in, you know, digging a hole in the backyard and burying yourself.
SHERWOOD: No, not at all. That's not at all what this is about. This is just about some basic knowledge and sort of a basic orientation which is -- and you've talked about this. There are things that are happening all around us that if you ignore them, you are putting yourself and your family and the people you love in greater jeopardy because unless you have a plan and a Plan B, unless you're facing reality -- it's called situational awareness in the military -- unless you are aware of the threats in daily life and unless you prepare for them and have a plan of action, you are basically, when that stuff happens, if the last few months the unthinkable has happened. Banks have collapsed, some of the pillars of the American economy have melted down. The unthinkable has happened, but there are still people out there who aren't facing those facts.
GLENN: That's amazing to me. It's amazing to me.
Stu said to me this morning, we were talking about it and I said, what, almost two years ago -- was it a year ago or two years ago? When we were at 14,000 in the Dow I said on the day we hit 14,000, I said, do not buy. Get out. Because the Dow will hit 7500. It is going to 7500. And everybody laughed and, you know, I was way out on a limb. And Stu said to me today when I pointed out, I said, "It's at 7300 today. I can't believe that." He said, you know, part of it with me is I'm not as freaked out I think as I would have been. Even though I made fun of it at the time, it was in my head and I had at least, you know, thought about it, dismissed it but thought about it. And so now that it's here, it's not as freaky as it may be for other people.
SHERWOOD: So when I went to the Air Force survival school in Spokane, Washington to learn the secrets that the military teaches its men and women on how to survive in hostile environments, I went up there to run around in the forests and find out what some of their special sauce is that I could put in the book so that regular people could use some of those secrets in daily life.
GLENN: 20 seconds.
SHERWOOD: They teach you to hug the monster, that is embrace your fears. Grab a hold of them. Wrestle. And as Stu says, if you imagine the Dow down at 7300, when it happens, it's not so terrifying.
GLENN: Good. Now imagine it at 3,000. Okay, we'll see you tonight, Ben. Special tonight, 5:00, Fox News Channel. Think the unthinkable.