We love making plans. The more elaborate, the better. If it involves post it notes, highlighter pens, a journal and hours spent on happy contemplation it is absolute bliss. But plans rarely turn out the way we intend – do they? At the best of times, the plan acts as a guide to aid execution and at worst of times, you have to throw it all out and start afresh.
So what do you do when faced with such a challenge? What do you do when all your plans are in the dustbin and you don’t know how to proceed?
Questions to ask yourself
As writers, bloggers and thought leaders, we love to introspect. And when things don’t go quite as per plan, here are some questions you can ask yourself:
- What was the objective of the initial plan and what happened instead
- Where did it go wrong
- Did I overestimate? Do I need to upgrade/learn a skill?
- What’s the solution – where do we go next
No matter how detailed your plan, execution happens in real-time and not always as per our wish. It is imperative to go back to the start i.e. what was the objective: was the objective to build a brand? Write a blog post with a unique perspective? Sell a service? Invite book reviews?
Once you have your objective, you find the deviation. What had you intended and what happened instead.
While looking for solutions, you may be tempted to start from a fresh slate but that isn’t always helpful. Trashing something is easier than picking up the pieces. So instead of diving headfirst into a new plan of action with your shiny new journal, ask yourself – can this be fixed? If yes, how?
- You’re human – so you made a mistake, you’ll find a solution faster if you picked yourself up instead of beating yourself into the ground.
- Be honest, but don’t judge – the introspection only works if you are honest with what happened, especially defining your role in the mistake.
- Take a break – sometimes a fresh perspective helps in dusting the cobwebs of the mind to kickstart the creative processes. Give yourself the luxury of time.
- Evaluate and adapt – as much as we’d love to believe, we may not always have the answers. Do some research, upgrade a skill, take a class, find a mentor – all of this will help you to be better prepared for future possibilities.
- Get back in the game – all of the above will be a useless exercise if you don’t begin again. You have asked your questions, you have a solution – now its time for course correction.
When backed into a corner, your choices should be to either climb the wall, or break it down. On the journey of blogger to thought leadership through #LeaderChatter all April. Come back for more!