One of the primary ways to becoming more self reliant, is to grow your own food, both meat and vegetables, in a sustainable healthy manner. One of the best web resources is the Small Farms Library at Journeytoforever.org
There is a whole set of prinicples that embodies the concept of nutrient cycles, and not creating waste. This concept is called Permaculture, for Permanent Agriculture. There are a number of good resources, and I encourage submissions to be linked here, but a good starter site is the Permaculture Association in the UK.