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a blog by Chris Barrow

Be prepared

Mid-week my alarm is set for 05:30.

That allows for a 90-minute session at my desk, before I break off for morning exercise.

Those first minutes of peace and solitude are crucial to the success and enjoyment of my day and include (over a cup of Early Grey):

  1. Reading a daily passage from a book on spirituality (this year I'm working through "A Calendar of Wisdom" by Leo Tolstoy);

  2. Writing my personal journal (I use Day One, a cloud-based application);

  3. Scanning the news headlines (I read The Guardian online);

  4. Checking Facebook and emails to identify any urgent and important messages;

  5. Reviewing my task list in ToDoist and completing the day's calendar and tasks in my Full Focus Planner;

  6. Writing this blog.

When that's done, I'm either out of the door on my bike or indoors on the Wattbike, depending on the weather.

By the time I do get to the exercise, I'm mentally primed, familiar with what the day is going to look like, aware of my priorities, ready for the challenges.

p.s. at weekend I repeat 1. through to 4. only - whenever I wake up.

p.p.s. when I was raising children, I rose at 05:00, so that I could get the same done before they were woken.

I simply cannot face a day unless I feel prepared.

Upon hearing the Scout motto, someone asked Scouting founder Robert Baden-Powell the inevitable follow-up question.

“Prepared for what?”

“Why, for any old thing,” he replied.

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