“Life is what happens while you’re busy making other plans.” – John Lennon
Do you like to plan?
Are you someone who crafts carefully thought out ‘to do’ lists or spends days, weeks, months making meticulous plans that ensure every detail is tweaked to perfection? If so, answer the next question honestly: do you ever act on any of those plans?
You see, if you get too hooked up on making perfect plans before taking any action on them, making plans becomes all that you do. If you don’t do anything, life goes on without you – and not necessarily in the way you planned.
People who turn dreams into realities are people who take action – planned action. To get to where you want to go in life, you need to know where that place is, and that’s going to take some thought, but those thoughts must then generate action. In other words, plan what you need to do, and then do it.
Your future intention determines your present action.
It was always Bill Gates’ intention to be a millionaire by the age of 30. He told his university lecturers that he would do it, and he did, actually becoming a billionaire by the age of 31, but he didn’t get there without acting on his intention. In his motivational speeches given to students, he drives home the need to act on plans, saying: “Television is not real life. In real life, people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.” Mark Zuckerberg echoes this advice when he says, “People don’t care about what you say, they care about what you build.” To succeed in any area of life, it’s not what you plan to do or what you say you’re going to do that matters, it’s what you do.
Dreamers Who Do
Author Sarah Ban Breathnach once said, “The world needs dreamers and the world needs doers. But above all, the world needs dreamers who do.” Successful people are undoubtedly dreamers – they dream big and they make big plans – but the key to their success is taking action on those dreams. If you’re one of life’s planners, you’re in danger of becoming a dreamer who doesn’t do.
What’s Stopping You?
If you’re a perpetual planner or a dreamer who doesn’t do, what’s holding you back?
Chances are, it’s fear. You fear things not going to plan, so you keep planning… But, here’s the thing; how will you ever know how things will go if you never do them?
We all have the potential to succeed in life, but it takes planned action. So, here’s another question to ponder over: are you a thinker or a doer? Are you thinking about your success or are you taking action to realise that success? The key to achieving what you want in life is to do both. Think big, dream big, make big plans, and then take action on those plans. Don’t wait for life to make plans for you.
Don MacNaughton is a High-Performance Coach.
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