The problem with planning

Despite knowing that the best laid plans often go awry, we often still find ourselves meticulously planning for the future.

However, like all things, planning is great but only in moderation.

But you have to allow yourself room to be fluid. Too much planning leads to rigidity, prevents innovation and restricts creativity.

It’s like when you have to go from A to B, you should plan your journey but if you try to plan out everything you will encounter along the way you’ll be less open to the unexpected. On the other hand not enough planning and you’ll just end up lost

It’s really just about finding the right balance.

Moving towards future plans

When starting something new, whilst it’s great to have a long term strategy, it is also important to focus on the present.

The last thing thing you want to do is get overwhelmed or distracted with where you want to be in a few years time.

The long term strategy gives you something to focus on and can help you figure out what you need to be doing day to day in order to achieve the bigger goal.

But what can end up happening is that you’re so focused on the little things you’re doing each day that you aren’t actually moving any closer to your goal.

And so it’s important to ensure that you regularly check in to keep things moving forward.

Getting across the beam

We often underestimate the role that belief plays in our development. But the truth is you could be so much more if only you believed.

Take something as seemingly insignificant as walking across a balancing beam. The people that make it from one side to the other will be the ones that believe they can get across.

Sure they might fall off a few times but because they already believe it’s possible they’ll have the determination to keep trying.

On the other hand, the ones who don’t believe, well they’re more likely to fall off and less likely to keep trying.

Or they won’t even try at all.

You’re lucky until you’re not

The idea of luck is great as a one off thing but if you grow to rely on it you’ll end up becoming lazy and disappointed.

You’ll be lazy because you’ll live your life assuming that you don’t have to try so hard because luck will balance things out for you.

And you’ll be disappointed because at some point things won’t balance out and you’ll be left wondering why?

Luck isn’t sustainable to rely on for the life you want but it’s great as an addition to a life you’ve worked for.

Luck is like the icing without the cake or the digestive biscuit without the chocolate, you’re perfectly fine without it.

Granted, there’s nothing wrong with holding the belief that things will turn out swimmingly but you can’t really expect that when you’ve taken the do nothing approach.

The difference between helping and fixing

It’s easy to find yourself stuck between helping someone and fixing things for them.

When you help you teach and offer tools giving the other person a chance to grow, develop and learn to do things for themselves. When you fix things for people they’re likely to become reliant on others to do things for them because that is all they know.

Often when we see people we care about face challenging situations we lend a hand. You think you’re helping but what you’re really doing is fixing the problem for them. And so as time passes and the person faces more challenges they don’t know how to do things for themselves because they haven’t learnt how to overcome.

We do it because we care and we don’t want to see the people we care for suffer. But in doing so we forget that these people have strengths within themselves and that they are also capable of overcoming their own challenges.

And so the lesson lies in finding the balance between helping and fixing. I’ve learnt that support plays a significant and often overlooked role. To look the person you love in the eye and simply say ‘I’m here for you and I’ll support you through this’ may be more powerful and have longer lasting effects than fixing things for them.

‘Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.’

 

Working for the weekend

There’s got to be another way.

When it comes to work I don’t believe that you should hate it.

I don’t believe that you should drag your heels to your place of work, then exhale a deep sigh of relief as you leave on a Friday because it’s finally the weekend and you’re free.

If you don’t like where you’re at try something else and yes it is that easy. I’m not saying quit your job, that would be quite silly of me.

I’m saying if it’s really that bad, look for things you’re interested in and start applying.

How much better would it feel and how much happier would you be if you actually enjoyed what you do for a living?

Taking risks in your twenties

Apparently, to quote TLC ‘This is how it should be done’.

People often say that your twenties are the best time to take risks and explore life.

You’re young, for many you don’t have as many responsibilities like a mortgage, home repairs and children, you might still live at home so you have a lot of expendable cash etc.

People say that your twenties are the time to do things like travel, try different jobs, move to a new city, start a business, basically just go out, find yourself and figure out who you want to be and how you wan to live.

In some ways it’s a lot of pressure and being in that age group, I ended up taking the opposite approach.

I’m almost half way into my twenties and so far I’ve been focused on things beginning with the letter S like saving, structure and stability.

In a lot of ways that’s great but on the flip-side it’s meant that I don’t often have room to take risks and explore.

But I’ve noticed my desire for those things growing and so the balancing act begins.

Should we be attached to the outcome?

Yes, no, maybe so.

There’s a thing in NLP about outcome based actions, that what we do should be based on the outcome we desire.

But recently I found myself thinking about how it’s important to not be too attached to the way things turn out.

At least not to the point where you crash and burn when things don’t go to plan.

It’s an interesting balance between action and outcome.

Sometimes we do things we wouldn’t normally do in the hopes of getting what we want. Sometimes it works out in our favour and other times not so much.

I believe that your actions should be done in support of your desired outcome but you shouldn’t be so attached to the result that you’re disheartened if things don’t work out.

Because no matter how hard you try, wish and will, their is only one single factor that you can actually control.

Yourself.

I work better when I’m busy

Often when we’re busy we’re overwhelmed and stressed. We find ourselves only hoping and wishing for things to slow down. We tell ourselves when I’m not so busy I’ll have more time for x, y and z.

And we believe it too. But I often find that the busier I am the better I am at balancing everything I have going on. Then as soon as things slow down I find myself much less productive with my time.

Being busy forces us to manage, it’s a sink or swim situation. We either manage or we don’t. But when we have more free time, the pressure is off, there are no obligations and much more freedom to choose.

So it’s easy for the habit of laziness to kick in. But it could just be because you need a break.

What would Seth Godin say?

I was getting ready for work this morning and suddenly stopped as I realised that I had not uploaded a blog post the day before.

Funnily enough a few days ago I was writing about how I’d feel if I missed a day but surprisingly I didn’t feel as bad as I thought I would have.

Part of me does feel like I’ve fallen short of my own expectations however, I also have to acknowledge the fact that my world did not implode or explode. The world has not (and will not ever) come to a stand still because I forgot to post on my blog.

Part of me even thought ‘What would Seth say?’ and I think he’d just say it’s okay you can post twice today instead and that the only person really affected was me but also that in the grand scheme of things this isn’t something to dwell on.

I suppose the general point I wanted to make today was that, some things aren’t as bad as you think they’ll be.

But I will be posting again today so keep your eyes peeled.