Look on the Bright Side: Be Prepared


I smiled as I recalled the long ago memory of my brother enacting the Boy Scouts motto—"be prepared"—while pressing two fingers to his forehead in the accompanying salute. The recollection stirred my curiosity. What was it they were supposed to be prepared for? To be prepared means to always be in a state of readiness, both in mind and body. Well, this caught my attention, especially on the cusp of another new year with our hearts again full of dreams, goals, and new resolutions.

Although I’m familiar with the old admonishment that success results when preparedness and opportunity meet, I’ve never really given much thought to the importance of being prepared. Is it our lack of preparedness that causes us to fall short of our dreams and goals? Do we fail to take advantage of, or even see, the opportunities before us simply because we aren’t prepared to meet them?

French biologist Louis Pasteur believed that “chance (or opportunity) favors the prepared mind.” After further reflection, I came to the conclusion that being prepared thus requires me to put myself in the best possible position to receive. Whatever this year’s goals may be, I must start to align myself now with the successful outcome I desire. I’ve come to understand that preparing our inner selves is the first step toward experiencing the results we crave.

This has led me to take stock of my thoughts. Thoughts that are contrary to what we want serve to sabotage our success. Trying and striving to outwardly reach a goal without having the support of our thoughts and feelings is like shooting an arrow at a brick wall! Our hearts and minds must first be convinced we’re worthy of the success we desire. Taking a few moments every day to remember our value and worth prepares us to see and take those important next steps. Creating an inner and outer environment that’s conducive to reaching our goals ensures that we are prepared to successfully navigate the course and cross our desired finish lines.

May this new year find us in a state of readiness, both in mind and body, so that when those wonderful opportunities do appear, we are fully prepared to meet them!

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