A friend and I were recently talking and we found that we’re both thinking about writing a book. I shared that I was looking to start work on my book in 2019. She looked at me curiously and asked, “What are you waiting for? Why don’t you do it now?”
I replied, “I already have my 2018 planned out, getting off track now would derail my focus.”
She repeated unbelievably, “You have your YEAR planned out?”
I plan my year because writing a book is just part of my plan. I want to create a life in which I attain the highest version of myself that I envision for myself. I am on a life journey in which I work to manifest my soul mission. For that to happen, I have to be focused and diligently working towards my dreams every day.
Early in my working career, a co-worker asked me if I realized that I was a Type A personality. I was surprised thinking of myself as more Type B: creative, stress free, laid back and going with the flow but I realized a few things:
- screw labels and mental boxes that people put us in
- we are so much more than either/or
- I was both type A & type B
I was an extreme go-getter at work, pushing the status quo, planning and prioritizing my tasks and days for maximum performance and excellence. Yet, in my personal life, I tended to live day by day, seldom planning anything and doing what I pleased based on the whim of the moment. I realized that the difference between these two parts of my life was that I intentionally set goals in my work life and made plans to achieve them, backed by deadlines, tasks and a “failure is not an option” mentality.
I realized that if I was going to achieve my personal goals, I had to be just as conscientious when it came to my personal life. I had to plan out my personal goals and commit to achieving them or they may never happen. I had to plan my private life just as I planned and prioritized my professional life.
“You are 90% more likely to achieve a goal if it is written down and referenced often, yet only 10% of people do so.”
– S. Schallenberger
It’s important to not just know what you want to do and plan it out, but to revisit your plans regularly in order to keep them in the forefront of your thoughts. I tried many organizing methods in an effort to find the system that worked best for me. You may find a different planning method that works better for you, but in case you want to try it out, here is a link to a journal organizer called: The Passion Planner. I love it!
Don’t get me wrong, I believe in going with the flow and not getting stuck in too much rigidity; however, I have also learned that I have a lot of ideas and I can’t do them all successfully at once. If I try, the output is not as excellent and it it takes me way longer to do many things at once rather than focusing on one task at a time and giving it my all.
Before we talk more about focus, know that I have already done the following:
- I knew who I was and who I wanted to be for me
- I knew who I wanted to be for others in my life
- I knew what I had to do to get to where I wanted to be
- I knew my strengths, challenges and resources
- I understood that I wanted to be balanced in all aspects of my life: physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually & financially
- I had a vision of what my life purpose is
I’ve planned out my year because I have multiple steps that I want to achieve in order to reach my end goal. Each step is intentionally planned to set me up for success in the next endeavor.
I take the time at the beginning of the year and align my vision and goals to identify what needs to be done so that I do not waste time recreating it over and over again throughout the year.
To ensure that I am consistently and positively working towards my end goal, I make specific plans. I know what my over arching vision is and I break it down into a managed plan with yearly, quarterly, monthly, weekly and daily goals that enable me to prioritize my time.
Then I continue working towards my quarterly milestones by completing the tasks that support achieving those goals every day.
My plan helps me identify a clear destination and potential obstacles that might prevent me from achieving my goal. These challenges provide inspiration for creative solutions towards a proactive plan to help sustain and give my vision momentum.
“When you create and live with a vision, you are actually creating your future. The mental creation precedes the physical creation of reality.”
– Steven Shallenberger
I’m not always great about being laser focused. Conflicting interests and unplanned events often take me off track but because I know what I want and where I should be every quarter, picking up where I left off is a simple thing. Being able to be flexible in life is necessary, so I don’t beat myself up too much if a goal takes longer than expected, I just roll with it knowing that every step towards my goals are a step in the right direction.
Much of life is unplanned but if I do what is most important to me in the time that I have while focused on vital areas of my life, I am using my time well, I am happy, I am more effective than ever before and I am more successful in all areas of my life.
I am always looking to improve myself as an individual. By being mindful of my priorities and manifesting my goals, I grow in confidence regarding my accomplishments and my ability for sustained contributions to the earth community.
There are many books that outline how important planning is to manifesting your dreams. Here are a few tried and true that adorn my bookshelves: (happy reading!)
We are diverse individuals with rich and varied lives. What are you focused on that improves your life and helps you become your best and grandest version of yourself?
If you liked this post, like and share, sign up to get these in your inbox, or join me on IG or FB. I just might change your life. – xoxo