You know what you want, in fact you put in the time and effort to get super clear about what you want; not what you don’t want, but what you actually want (and this makes all the difference), and now you need a plan to achieve it.

The best plan is one that’s easy to follow. Not necessarily easy to do, but easy to follow.

Step by step.

One step down, and on to the next.

No guessing as to what’s next, it’s all laid out. You just have to follow the steps.

While getting crystal clear on what you want to achieve is vital, this next part is just as important, for many reasons. And taking the time to create an effective and well thought out plan will pay dividends in the end. In fact, it’s what will determine whether you reach your goal or not.

With one caveat. More on that later.

Think of creating your plan like you would plan a trip. You know where you’re starting from and what your destination is, and you map out your route along the way. Detours might happen, but you know where you’re headed and you know how you’re getting there.

By thinking the planning through from start to finish, you will know what resources you’ll need and have them in place. You will identify many obstacles before they happen – and have the solutions ready to address them.

By having the plan laid out step by step, it’s easy to follow. No guessing, no wondering what’s next, no scrambling.

Finish one part, move on to the next. And the next. Until you’ve reached your goal.

A step by step plan breaks an overwhelming endeavour down into something manageable. Just focus on one step at a time. Especially if the goal is a few months, or maybe even a few years in the making. When it’s that far off, it’s too easy to become discouraged and feel like you’re never going to get there. This is when it’s a good idea to make each major step a goal in itself.

One thing to remember when creating your plan, and this is important too, is to make it You. Make the plan something you would do, something you can do. After all, you’re the one doing this! It has to work for you, so don’t follow how other people would do it, or let anyone else tell you how to do it. This is your plan. This is you. Listen to suggestions, absorb information, but ultimately, it’s your plan, your steps that you’re going to be doing. It’s all about you.

Now, that one caveat.

If the plan stops working for whatever reason, or it starts to head in another direction, change your plan.

As simply as that – just change or tweak your plan. This is a journey, and it’s your journey. Don’t lose sight of your goal. Think of this as one of those detours along the way, or an alternate route.

It doesn’t mean there is something wrong with your planning. It’s only a detour along the way to reaching your goal.

And a really good opportunity to hone your planning skills.

Just remember to create another plan that’s step by step, doable, and you.

You’ll get there.

I have every confidence.

Featured photo courtesy of Unsplash/Felipe Furtado