It’s time to rewrite the plan. I’ve known for a long time that the old plan sucked. Yet, there’s been a void awaiting a new plan. I don’t have the new plan all figured out, which actually makes the new plan all the more seductive. What I do have, is something of a process, and the knowledge of what tools I have and what tools I don’t along with the idea that there are tools I’ll need that I don’t yet know about.
To be slightly less vague, the old plan was a well-trodden one: College, Work, Work, Work, Family? The second part, despite many merits and by no means something I’m looking to escape from, has mostly lacked substance and has likely created some severe issues around depleted health: mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and likely physically.
After absorbing a lot of self-help and/or instructional information in the past 18+ months, mostly in audio form, and guidance in my personal life, the following is an intuitive, or subjective, distillation of how my new plan might shape-up.
Sense A Dream, Craft A Vision, Define Goals
- Old expectations die hard. Openness is key in the beginning of anything new. It’s simple, but can take some coming around to. My idea of a dream is something that comes from being open to what’s possible, and listening truthfully to what the heart wants, while keeping a space around it.
- A vision is a precursor to plans and goals. Before you get into the tactics, you have to know the strategy.
- Goals are a step above tactics, but to turn anything into action, goals are helpful.
Listen For A Daily Intention
This is a new one. Words float in to my brain, ranging from a single word to what I imagine as lyrics despite my lack of any musical ability whatsoever. Sometimes I write them down. When I don’t they usually slip into the ether and temporary regret squats in that mental space blasting a broken record: If only I’d written it down.
My memory is lousy. Lately, I’ve found that the simplicity of choosing a single word intention for the day, provides a simple lens to help me navigate the day with purpose. If the day turns to shit, I have to take responsibility, and I can frame the experience in the context of my intention.
Have An Accountability Partner
This one’s hard for me, but I know I need it. Someone to call me on my shit, to keep me on-track. I can be painfully shy and socially inept. For the moment these words in the great wide open are my accountability. I’m working on this.
Start It, Do It, Create It
- Remove barriers and don’t make starting harder than it has to be. Think “Progress, not perfection.” —Kathy Freston
- Deadlines aren’t fun, and despite the name aren’t usually lethal, but putting some dates out there can help. Time is my enemy (timing is my enemy, more specifically). Time management is an opportunity for victory.
- Sketch, figuratively or literally. Think gesturally, they key is to articulate abstract ideas into action. Motion can’t be underestimated or undervalued. Motion keeps the ideas circulating. By contrast, stillness enables openness to quieter, if not hidden knowledge piqued from experience. Both motion and stillness are needed. Stimulus and reflection. As the artist of my own life, its my job to translate the abstract into stuff that hopefully has meaning.
- Get a prototype in your hands asap. Live the dream, as the saying goes.
Keep It Fluid and Have Fun
A dream starts one place and can end up quite different by the time point B is reached. Be protective of the dream as an expression of values, but not precious about it (The “If only” mentality). Stay unattached from those old expectations that provoked the rewrite. The ever-new plan, or path, is dynamic and a learning process. If the process isn’t interesting and fun, why venture? Keep exploring and discovering, all of the experience raises your level of consciousness.