I read an intriguing article about the meaning of “Shipshape and Bristol Fashion and the applications to life and business are interesting and valuable to note.

The history and meaning of the nautical phrase “shipshape and Bristol fashion, ” in the words of Elder Quentin L. Cook, as as follows: “At one time Bristol was the second busiest port in the United Kingdom. It had a very high tidal range of 43 feet (13 m), the second highest in the world. At low tide when the water receded, the old ships would hit bottom and fall on their sides, and if the ships were not well built, they would be damaged. In addition, everything that was not carefully stowed away or tied down would be thrown in a chaotic fashion and ruined or spoiled.”

In life and in business, tides come in and they go out. Like the seasons: they change. The only thing that never changes is change. Everything starts and has its end, including our lives. Those who are young, inexperienced, and naive don’t believe they need a “Plan B” or, indeed, a “Plan C.” In fact, there are those with less brains than scruples who will tell them they shouldn’t have a Plan B. We need to be prepared spiritually, as well, in order to face the interesting and difficult time which we will all have to face in life.

Those who are well prepared, in their characters, their spiritual lives, their relationships, and their businesses, can withstand and rise above hardships. They can help and teach others who have failed to do so. They can emerge stronger than ever before. It takes effort, discipline, and dedication to be shipshape and Bristol fashion, but the payoff is great. Greed, laziness, and allowing the base aspects of our natures to control our choices will ensure that we will flounder and fail when the storms of life buffet us. We will lose friends and family and be exposed for who we really are.

I encourage you to take the time to evaluate your life, to play a few “What If?” games in your mind, to consider the power of preparation and to honestly measure yourself against the high standards of your holy books. I have been fortunate to find the church that works very well for me, and my business model fits perfectly, because I never have to violate or compromise my values.

Read the excellent article by Elder Cook here.

Robin Elliott LeverageAdvantage.com