Thursday, February 25, 2010

Staying Half a Step Ahead

If you are half a step ahead of a situation, your stress level is minimal. If you are half a step behind, the stress is nearly continuous. It is only one step, but it makes all the difference for your stress, your health, and your life. Consider the following example.

If you have an appointment to go to at an address you've never visited, when do you research the directions you need. I've seen too many people trying to do a quick internet map search when they should be on the road. If everything goes perfectly, they will arrive just on time. If not, they are setting themselves up to be half a step behind.

To get half a step ahead, consider doing your research anead of time. You could research the day before and put directions in your calendar so you can have it available when you need it.

This is just basic planning and applies more broadly than directions. What meetings or appointments do you have in the next few days? What information or materials will you need for each. Can you get that information or those materials ready ahead of time?

The key is to understand that preparation for an event is part of planning for the event. Make a habit of identiofying what needs to be done in advance, then do it in advance. Take the steps you need to take, but take them just a little sooner. You'll thank yourself later.

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