Don’t obsess about the destination
Look up, look around and you might just enrich your journey.
We plan all the time. Particularly at work. Time is money and planning is perceived to drive every last penny on to your bottom line.
Planning is essential but plans are like promises, they are made to be broken.
It’s often the case we lose focus on our objective because we obsess about it. We obsess because everything rides on it, it can’t fail – at any cost. All valid concerns. However, what we miss is opportunities that come from the process.
In his blog post Optimize To Be Wrong, tech entrepreneur Barry O’Reilly writes, “A rigid business plan, product roadmap and/or set of requirements forces people to do whatever it takes to prove that the idea or method is a good one. If we are determined to convince others that a certain result is possible, we will lose sight of all of the alternative possibilities and potential options available along the way.”
So first, a couple of things to accept.
No plan is 100%. Nothing is. The first step to acceptance is surrendering yourself to this. No matter how much control you think you have, or how hard you work at trying to keep control, there are things out of your control that – guess what? – you can’t control.
The second thing to accept is that change is OK. Whether it’s change that’s out of your control or change that’s forced upon you it’s OK. I know, it’s easier to say than to experience but here’s the juice.
Embrace the change but maintain your direction. By doing this you keep your momentum and your objectives will remain in sight. The beautiful by-product here (the added juice) is that by accepting change you’ll see a new way of doing things. What first seem like blockers become fuel for a rethink – to recharge and go again. Being forced to take a step back might just be what’s required.
WARNING: Awful nautical metaphor ahead!
So, view your plan as a heading and prepare yourself for all kinds of weather. When the storm hits stand at the front of the boat and wave your fists at the sky in defiance. Regroup your crew, review your tactics and maintain your heading.