So you have that goal in mind.
You know where you want to go but not exactly sure how to get there or what you'll need along the way. So you start planning. And then you start planning for what might happen if that plan falls through.
And then you think...well, what if I'm on the road to the goal and I realize I really should consider this other path to getting there. So you start making another plan based on your contingency plan and based on whether or not that plan might fall through or need tweaking.
And then you get worried about failure. Then you get worried about success. And you feel like you need to plan for both of those too.
I get it. It's exhausting, right?
And what's worse is by the end of all this... you forgot why you started, where you were going and what you were really after in the first place. So you go nowhere, paralyzed by what it called analysis paralysis.
Does this sound somewhat familiar?
Let's be honest, some of you are really good at making plans and sticking to them and you're laser focused on achieving goals with no detours.
The other 90% of us applaud you and are in awe of you.
But the majority of us are a little more easily distracted.
A bit more timid.
Way more uncertain.
And we think we need to have a really well thought out plan if we're ever gonna get anywhere.
It's kind of what we've been taught right?
And I personally think that mindset is a big reason I've not achieved more goals in my life so far.
See for people like me who get easily overwhelmed by planning and who think better on my feet and who thrive in the moment, great big master plans are like learning Chinese. I can't figure out which goes first and what happens if this goes wrong or changes. And everything seems dependent on something else happening first and then what if it doesn't? And before I know it, I feel like my head will explode and I just want to curl into the fetal position and eat chocolate.
So I stopped planning.
Now hear me clearly.
I didn't COMPLETELY stop planning. I still know generally what I'm after and where to start BUT I let go of trying to micromanage the journey and it has made all the difference.
Let's take my Brave Thursdays as the perfect and most recent example. If you're new around here... Brave Thursdays are my designated day to call companies, stores and galleries to attempt to get licensing deals, wholesale opportunities and possibly representation.
All I know is I want to contact companies, stores and galleries in the hopes of expanding my business through licensing and wholesale opportunities. What is my plan each Thursday? To cold call and/or email at least one company or store each week inquiring and introducing myself and my work.
See old me would have spent weeks researching companies and stores, researching how to write captivating emails and the best way to send a portfolio of art electronically. And then weeks and months would pass and not a single email would be sent, nor a single call made.
Instead, I'm working off a "list" of companies and stores I've been saving in Instagram. It's a fluid list that I add to anytime I see a feed of a company that might seem like a good fit to me.
Instead, I'm sending perfectly imperfect emails to companies introducing myself and my work. Could they be better? I'm sure they could be. But if the choice is between perfect and wait to send it or pretty good and send it now, I'm choosing send it now.
Some of you are literally cringing right now and thinking this is laziness. You're thinking it's an excuse or "Why not just figure out the perfect email and then send it over and over? Spend the time on the forefront and then start sending them."
And you have valid points.
All I know is that FOR ME... I realized that me waiting just built up the fear and anxiety for the situation and the more casually I treated it, the more relaxed I felt about it. I also realized that starting with companies that are less important to me was the perfect way to start learning and getting comfortable with the calling and emailing so as I go, each one is easier and easier and when the bigger companies come along, I will be far more confident.
And one final thing and possibly the most important... When you don't have a perfect plan in mind, you're more receptive to the organic way the goal might start unfolding on it's own. For me, it feels like I've left room for God to move and direct me in ways I might not have expected.
More on that later but here's the bottom line, friends. Movement is more important than perfect plans. A loosely planned move in the general direction of your goal now at least gets you moving. And as they say, you can't move a parked car, similarly it's hard to get a dream going if you're stuck in planning mode too long. Just move on it and see what happens is often times the solution to feeling perpetually stuck, friends.
What about you? Any thoughts on this? Does planning too much paralyze you as well or do you thrive with a well thought out plan?