I recently returned from a family trip in Washington DC. Nine of my family members toured the Nation’s Capitol together for four days.
Some might consider the trip aggressive. Others, even crazy. Our group of nine ranged in age from 7 to 73. We toured along with hundreds of thousands who’d come to see the Cherry Blossoms, the White House, and to fulfill their eighth grade field trip this spring break.
The amazing thing was what could have been disastrous was…DELIGHTFUL!
We had fun, were fully engaged, learned and experienced EXACTLY what we wanted.
I reflected on what made it work. It’s something many in life tell me they’re missing…we had a plan.
We never felt unfocused or scattered.
We were never at odds with our priorities for the trip.
We didn’t make things super important that were not.
Why? Because that’s what happens when you have a plan.
Many of us have plans for vacations and strategic plans for business. We have house plans, financial plans, and key purchasing plans, but few take the time to create a Life Plan.
Instead we tend to move around in a hectic world trying to get to a blurry “there.”
Without a plan we spend our days multi-tasking, reactive, scattered and easily distracted.
In short, without a plan and clear focus we don’t consistently experience living our best self at work or home.
We believe we’re “working hard at it,” but quietly we’re frustrated and confused.
WHY A LIFE PLAN?
A life plan allows you to…
o consistently take action to progress to your goals and aspirations.
o stay focused on your priorities (and know when you’re off).
o gain traction.
o be fully engaged, present, enthusiastic,and confident as you travel because(and this is key) YOU KNOW WHERE YOU WANT TO GO.
A plan allows you to get there with greater ease and more joy because you know your end point. Think…
PLAN –>FOCUS –> CONFIDENCE –> GOAL
WHY SO MANY MAKE THE MISTAKE OF NOT HAVING A PLAN…
o We were never taught how to craft a life plan. Strategic Life Planning 101 was never offered at my school.
o We don’t commit the time or FOCUS to craft a plan.
o Creating a life plan is not easy. Let’s face it. It can be really tough to do this sort of work by yourself with no one to bounce ideas off.
o And finally, the biggest reason I find that we don’t have a plan…we simply don’t know what we want.
You can’t create a plan to an elusive and blurry destination.
Until you know what you want, whether you want A or B or F, you can‘t create a plan. You need a precise address for your GPS. Not a vague idea.
Here’s a five-question framework to answer what you want from your life or work.
Your strategic life plan will answer these questions…
1. What do I want to create?
2. What do I want my life and work to look like in eighteen months?
3. What is the one ambitious goal that excites me to work on daily?
4. Why do I want to create this experience or idea?
5. Who will be positively impacted by me creating my ambition?
So where do you want to end up? We all want to enhance and grow our marriages, work, business, parenting and other important relationships? What does that look like to you?
You must know what to plug into your GPS to get there.
Lean into and imagine that scene where you’re living your best version of you. See it clearly. Get in touch with how you feel when you’re there.
Go further now. Try it on. Change the details, you don’t like.
Don’t make the mistake of racing to create a plan without having answered these questions. Once you answer these questions, you have a framework for your strategic life plan.
We didn’t see everything in Washington DC on this trip. We did, however, see what we wanted. The group of nine is already leaning in and designing our next one.
Be among the 2% of individuals who craft a vision and plan for their fulfilling life.
Begin by answering the five questions above. Get the support you need.
Something funny happens when you get clear and make the decision to advance your life to the next level. Often what was once a case of a “Floundering Life” or “Fine Life” turns to the “Fulfilled & Fabulous Life” you’ve always dreamed about.
I look forward to seeing what you create and being a part of the world where you’re bringing your best work and life to play!
In my next blog I’ll will share how to edit, cut or re-position to focus your life and make space for a life plan that works for you.