Quick....here's an easy question. How do you get from Point A to Point B? For example, imagine you're driving from your house to a new restaurant you've never been to before. The question is, how do you get there? The answer is simple: Follow the directions. The directions are your plan to achieve your goal. Just like in life, business follows that simple approach.
If you want to be successful, start with a good plan and follow it. It doesn't have to be a 42-page plan and quite frankly, that would be defeating. A plan can just be simply what are the specific actions I going to take in the next 30 days to get closer to my goal? However, when I review most student's plans, there just isn't enough detail to make the steps actionable. Breaking things down to actionable steps is the key to building a good action plan. Ask yourself this: If I were only to have one 15-minute period to accomplish as much as possible, how would you then break this plan down further?
For example, using the above driving-to-the-restaurant idea, if I were to lay out a plan it wouldn't start with "drive to the restaurant". It would probably start with get the directions, then #2, print the directions, then #3, get to vehicle, then #4, drive to the restaurant. Of course it could be broken down to even greater detail; however, the point is it needs to be actionable.
The shadow side of our subconscious keeps us away from creating a plan. The shadow side doesn’t like accountability and wants to keep us away from putting something down on paper. Once it’s on paper, it can be measured. Your shadow side is trying to keep you at the same level of performance and it will resist creating a plan. Therefore, understanding this and learning how to manage against it is an important success mastery, and a topic for a future article.
When you have a plan and keep improving it, making it dynamic, you’ll be able to capture and organize your approach to success in addition you’ll be able to capitalize on innovative ideas that come to mind. If you’re trying to keep it straight all in your head, you’ll be too busy and distracted to capture new ideas from the positive-side of your subconscious. Once you get your plan out of your head and on paper that will free up your subconscious to focus on other creative solutions to act upon and incorporate into your plan.
So the million dollar question! How do you make a plan? This will be the topic of our next article later this month called Components of a Successful Action Plan.