A quick reality check for your 2016 plans – 3 ways to seize control while there’s still time left

"So, Bookface, how are your plans for this year?" "Well, I filled my quota of cat pictures back in January..."Time for a quick reality-check. It’s now over a third of the way through 2016 – have your plans for this year materialised yet, or have you already told yourself “well, maybe next year…”

If that’s you, it’s time to be proactive and to begin designing your future.

Now, Woody Allen wasn’t far wrong when he said “If you want to make God laugh, tell him about your plans.”

In other words, not all designs work out as planned, so I’ve provided some guidelines that successful people use implicitly and which you can begin to use explicitly.

These are:

While following these systems doesn’t guarantee success, they will definitely show you what is workable and give you ways to get started on your hopes and dreams instead of waiting and hoping.

That’s it. Be proactive – do something definite and do it today…

About Planning – An Update

It’s no secret that most of us spend too much time thinking before we move into action. When most of us think or talk about doing something, we call that activity ‘planning’.

I’ve written a lot about the virtues of planning correctly, so let’s look at the liabilities with certain types of plan.

  1. Your plan must not be set in stone
    An inflexible plan is blind to feedback. That’s a bit like driving at the speed limit on the motorway, despite the upcoming traffic jam. Disaster.
  2. Your plan must be more about your outcome than the means of achieving it
    Again, this is a statement of flexibility. If you’re thoroughly sold on a particular route, it can blind you to other – easier – ways of getting there.
  3. Your plan must embrace the possibility of failure and redesign
    Sometimes things just don’t work out the way we planned them. If your plan is outcome-based and principle-based, it’s easy to redesign into a working plan as you go along. Then you don’t need to stop for downtime and analysis – and this avoids the discouragement that often comes with stopping.

In short, the key is flexibility, flexbility, flexibility.

The principle to keep in mind is this – your plan must be adaptable to guarantee you will succeed.

So there’s really no need for so much thinking.

Set your outcome, gather relevant principles and start to evolve courses of action. Then start doing something and let the principles guide you as you keep your eyes on the outcome.

Act, adapt, achieve, succeed.

Overthinking – an antidote?

I’ve often said that the biggest stumbling block most people face is ‘too much thinking’.

Not just the ‘wrong sort’ of thinking – a definite imbalance between thought and activity.

Now, it’s fairly obvious when a person has not put enough thought into something.

The difficulty usually lies when we over-think a course of action and we justify that by labelling the wasted time as ‘planning’.

I’ve written a lot about the virtues of planning correctly, so let’s look at the liabilities with certain types of plan.

1. Your plan must not be set in stone

An inflexible plan is blind to feedback. That’s a bit like driving at the speed limit on the motorway, despite the upcoming traffic jam. Disaster.

2. Your plan must be more about your outcome than the means of achieving it

Again, this is a statement of flexibility. If you’re thoroughly sold on a particular route, it can blind you to other – easier – ways of getting there.

3. Your plan must embrace the possibility of failure and redesign.

Sometimes things just don’t work out the way we planned them. If your plan is outcome-based and principle-based, it’s easy to redesign into a working plan as you go along. Then you don’t need to stop for downtime and analysis – and this avoids the discouragement that often comes with stopping.

In short, the key is flexibility, flexbility, flexibility.

The principle to keep in mind is this – your plan must be adaptable to guarantee you will succeed.

So there’s really no need for so much thinking.

Set your outcome, gather relevant principles and start to evolve courses of action. Then start doing something and let the principles guide you as you keep your eyes on the outcome.

Act, adapt, achieve, succeed.