Monday, June 4, 2012

Map Your Plans for Success

It’s that time of year when you may be getting ready for your summer vacation or even a few days off from your regular routine. While a spontaneous day at the beach may not require a great deal of planning, there are many activities, projects and events that could benefit from a little more planning.


Let’s say you begin to take yourself a bit more seriously and actually schedule time to work on your summer projects. Maybe you really want to have your garage or basement cleaned out by the end of the summer. You think about how great it would feel to drive into your garage with everything in place or go into your basement and actually find what you’re looking for. 

But you are reluctant to make the commitment to write down specific times to do the necessary tasks. You are even reluctant to write down a list of the tasks. “I’ll do it later,” you tell yourself. But later never comes because there is always something more interesting to do.

But what if you committed to 30 minutes or an hour to clear off one shelf or go through one box. What if you wrote down that commitment in your planner?  What if you kept that commitment to yourself, no matter what?


Now let’s say you commit to the 30-minute to one hour task every week or even two times a week. Is that a structure you can live with? 

What would happen if you committed to your mapped out strategy and time frame? Imagine what you might accomplish. You might even be so pleased with your progress, you get the project done even sooner than you had planned!


You may find yourself thinking, “But if I plan and map out a structure, I will lose my spontaneity.” Or, “But planning is so boring!” 

First of all, you are unlikely to lose your spontaneity. You will actually feel better and have more energy when you start to see what you are accomplishing. 

Secondly, planning does not have to be boring. Try creating a mind map or drawing out your plan. Spend some time visualizing, to give your planning energy. You know change is challenging. You are likely to go back to your old way of doing things unless you have mapped out your plan with dates and times to accomplish specific tasks.

Finally, reward yourself each time you are successful in changing an old habit. Reward yourself each time you follow through. Let mapping out your plan help move you increasingly move toward success!

Take good care, 


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