Success is no accident. And it’s a result of more than just money, job titles, and college degrees. Planning for success is about mapping out various aspects of your life, to define what success really means to you.
Just like a trip with an actual map, you need to define your origin, destination, vehicle, backpack, landmarks, and route.
Origin: Who you are
Your origin is who you are right now. To gain insights about yourself, look at your believes, values and principles. And remember those things lie outside your economic, professional, cultural, and civil status.
You can also reflect on your experiences to give you insights on the traits you like and dislike about yourself, as well as your skills, knowledge, strengths, and weaknesses.
Destination: A vision of who you want to be
Who do you want to be? Once you know yourself, you can have a clearer idea of who you want to me. This includes things you want to change about yourself, including attitudes, habits, and points of view.
If you didn’t know yourself well, you wouldn’t know what you wanted to change about yourself.
You need to determine your vision and target for the future. This should cover all the aspects of your being: physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual.
Vehicle: Your mission
To a great extent, your mission depends on what you know about yourself as well. It is the means by which you can reach your destination. What do you want to do with your life? For most, this is what vocation they choose, otherwise known as their career.
Travel Bag: Your knowledge, skills, and attitude
You bring with you certain knowledge, skills, and attitudes. These determine your competence and help you attain your vision. So you need to assess what knowledge, skills, and attitudes you currently have, and what you need to gain along the way.
This assessment will help you know how you can measure progress along the way to your destination.
Landmarks and Route: S.M.A.R.T. objectives
Landmarks confirm whether or not you are on the right track. The route determines the travel time. In life, these methods of measurement must be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time bound.
Of course, be sure that your objectives are not in conflict with each other, or are unrealistic. You wouldn’t set the goal of getting a master’s degree and doctorate in three years, as that would take much longer.
Anticipates Turns, Detours, and Potholes
Finally, you will run into the unexpected. Be prepared to modify your life map along the way due to inconveniences, delays, and other situations beyond your control. Like any path, there will be turns, detours, and potholes along the way. Expect the unexpected!