The Importance of a Plan

January 15, 2013 Sandra Dawes

I’m sure we all have a lot of goals that we want to achieve for this new year.  We start the year with a long list of things we hope to accomplish and often finish the year with very few items crossed off as complete.  So what can we do to make sure that we finish 2013 with a list we can be proud of?  For me, I think the key is to have a plan.  It’s all good and well to say that we are going to lose weight, make more money, or find a job, but how much thought do we give to how we’re going to do it?

Without a plan, it’s easy to get discouraged when things don’t happen right away.  You may want to lose weight, and when you step on the scale at the end of January and you’re not any lighter, you get frustrated and want to give up.  What would happen if you had established a plan prior to setting out to achieve any given goal?  If you want a new job, what’s your plan?  Are you going to take courses to make yourself more employable?  Hire a career coach? Update the resume and put the word out to friends and colleagues?  A plan provides you with a point of reference for when you get stuck, or wonder what you should do next.

Chopping up your goal into small, attainable bits is an important element in making your goal achievable.  Instead of looking at losing 20 pounds, try a pound a week, and reducing your sugar intake and hitting the gym 3 times a week!  When you break your goals down into the things you are going do for the week, or even just today, towards achieving your goals, you take one more step to making that goal a reality.

Putting a plan together is by no means a sexy notion.  When you want your goals bad enough and you’re tired of not being able to achieve them, it’s time to stop spinning your wheels and be more definite about the actions you take.  Having a plan puts you one step closer to making your goals a reality.  It gives you something to look forward to every day, and well as something you can review at any time to measure your progress. 

I’ve heard it said that a goal without a plan is simply a dream.  If you want your dreams to become a reality, developing a plan to make it happen is the first step.  Putting that plan into action is what is going to take it to levels that you’ve never reached before.  Let’s make 2013 the year that we all realize our goals!

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