Getting Prepared One Step at a Time

agenda-1928416_1920During the first month of the year, many of us set goals to save more money, increase our physical activity or otherwise improve ourselves and our lives. But many of us also make the mistake of being unrealistic about what we can achieve, and we start feeling overwhelmed.

A well thought-out plan that breaks the goal into smaller, manageable steps is a great way to improve your chance of success. So in the interest of helping you be more prepared at the end of 2017 than you are today, here is a month-by-month action plan for getting Ready.

  • January: Download the Ready GA app
    • Ready Georgia has created a one-stop-shop to help get Georgians prepared for emergencies. Available for free on iPhone and Android devices, the app provides weather alerts, helps you track your Ready kit supplies and even allows you to notify friends and family that you are safe following an emergency.
  • February: Start building a Ready kit
    • If assembling a complete Ready kit seems too large of a task, start small by picking up a few items (e.g., a can opener, non-perishable food, a flashlight and a first aid kit) and plan to get more over time.
  • March: Determine where to take shelter from a tornado
    • Planning and practicing how to take shelter during a tornado can be life-saving. Identify a basement or interior room where you will be most protected.
  • April: Create a family emergency plan
    • Create a plan for your family so they will know where to go and how to communicate in the event of an emergency.
  • May: Plan to evacuate
    • Where would you go if you had to leave your home immediately? Plan ahead so that you can evacuate quickly and safely, no matter what the circumstances.
  • June: Create a pet preparedness plan
    • Our furry friends are affected by disasters too. June is National Pet Preparedness Month and the perfect time to decide what your pets will need in the event of an emergency.
  • July: Add more items to your Ready kit
    • Pick up where you left off in stocking your Ready kit, and set a deadline to complete it.
  • August: Check school emergency procedures
    • When children go back to school, familiarize yourself with school emergency procedures.
  • September: Help get a family member or friend prepared
    • Now that you’re getting prepared, pay it forward by helping your family and friends take steps to get Ready. This can be especially helpful for older relatives.
  • October: Get tech Ready
    • Technology can become incredibly important during an emergency, so make sure you have an emergency charging option for your cell phone and other devices. You can also use a password-protected jump drive or the cloud to store copies of important documents.
  • November: Practice fire safety
    • When Daylight Savings Time ends on Nov. 5, swap out old batteries with fresh ones in your smoke detectors and hold a family fire drill to practice escaping in event of a fire.
  • December: Get your car Ready too
    • Emergencies can happen when you’re out on the road; add a mobile Ready kit to your car so you’re prepared for anything.

As you take steps to prepare this year, remember that it’s not an all-or-nothing proposition. Even if you only complete half of the tasks we’ve outlined for the year, you’ll be more prepared and ready to keep improving next year.