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a blog by Chris Barrow

Your personal rev counter

My coach Rachel Turner talks about your personal rev counter.

Imagine a dial that shows your stress levels in the same way as the RPM dial on your car dashboard.

On a good day you can motor along at 3,000 revs, in the most efficient gear, a comforting hum coming from below the bonnet.

Every now and then you might accelerate and the dial reads 8,000 or 9,000 revs as you move in to the red zone - there's that screaming noise from the engine. You grip the wheel, complete the maneuver that prompted your pedal to the metal - and then settle back down to cruising speed.

Rachel asks some interesting questions:

  1. What gets you running high revs in the first place?

  2. How long can you sustain those high revs?

  3. What do you do to get the revs back down again at the end of your day?

Some high revs can be healthy - a quick burst of energy to get a job done.

An engine running at 9,000 revs all day will fail - sometimes with a bang.

Yesterday my revs were higher than usual.

That's very unusual for me - my trusty Garmin Vivosmart (mentioned earlier in the week in connection with my sleep patterns - sleeping much better now thanks) also gives me a daily analysis of stress - I potter along at an average of 25/100 where the higher you go the worse things are. Imagine that as a healthy 2,500 on my personal rev counter.

Here's the last 6 months:

A function of everything I've ever said about focus, simplification, unique ability teams and removing tolerations.

So back to yesterday - and the higher stress level - my rev counter popping back up to 9,000 revs repeatedly as the day evolved.


I'm almost embarrassed to tell you that the cause was a faulty internet connection in The Bunker.

This morning I still haven't found the cause - either someone has put a spade through a cable down the street - or some device, hardware or software is malfunctioning. That investigation continues.

What it did, however, was pop that rev counter back up - every time my browsing and emailing came a sudden stop or, even more problematic, when my Zoom calls froze.

There's a first-world problem for you - I guess my equivalent of an equipment failure in surgery.

Last night I facilitated my last evening webinar from the dining room table, just to get physically closer to the main router and that did give me an excellent hour with Pat Langley and our Associate Development Programme that was relatively trouble free.

To repeat - Rachel Turner asks "how do you get your revs back down again?"

Is it:

  • Alcohol

  • Caffeine

  • Sugar

  • Shopping

  • Netflix

Or is it

  • Yoga/Meditation

  • Walking/running/cycling/swimming

  • Reading/Music

When I switched off at 20:30 last night - I have to tell you the temptation was to break my mid-week alcohol-free routine. I didn't.

I did choose Netflix though and watched the first episode of "Queen's Gambit" (very good) before a 30-minute read in bed.

This morning, as usual, I'm about to head out for a 10km run and it's pouring down outside - I'll enjoy that - running in the rain is a favourite (it's all about appropriate clothing).

We shall see how my internet performs today and how high I rev as a result.

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