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Be sure, don’t be uncertain if you can avoid it.

There are many things in life and sailing that are uncertain, the weather for a start, but often there is an ability to turn uncertainty into certainty.

Where you have these windows of opportunity make sure you take them, immediately. A bit like “if you think you should, you should”.

A great example of this is hanging on anchor. Sometimes on anchor you mill about with no wind going in circles and then a gust will come in and catch your boat the other side of your anchor with no chain tension. You’ll sail backwards in the gust and pull the anchor out of the bottom as the chain suddenly comes taught from a completely different direction to what the anchor has set in.

This leaves you with an alarm going off and a straight line where the boat has drifted back with the gust and toppled the anchor. The question is of course has the anchor “RESET” again and well enough to hold against any expected gusts to come or do you need to pull it up and reset it, perhaps clean the grass and mud out of it first or has it picked up a shopping cart, or a large heavy plastic bag, or someone else’s chain (All recent true Stories, fortunately not ours)?

Our anchor almost always resets and we stop, perhaps outside our original anchor circle because the anchor has skipped for a few metres before it resets….. but how well has it reset? do you just relax and trust it.. .sleep on it?

Or do we start the engines, pull back on it hard and check that it has set properly whilst helping it set?

For a few minutes effort you get certainty again and you’ll sleep well.

Reefing is another , commonly expressed, example of “be sure, do it now” thinking, tying on something on deck is another, using your radar for a moment coming into a bay to “check your charts are actually correct” is another (We’ve found they are not a couple of times so far!!!!), Preparing your lines for a sudden necessary manoeuvre is another as is leaving your clutch open on the mainsheet and Genoa in case you need to dump it suddenly.

If you can do something to be certain, be certain.

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