Okay, I’ll be gentle with ‘ya, let’s change it to ‘plan for the best, expect the unexpected’.
Let’s assume you’ve kicked off on a goal and things are going great, everything is going to plan. Then for whatever reason you slam into a literal brick wall. Something happens which you didn’t plan for. You didn’t see it coming.
If this has happened to you before, you may have lost motivation or drive because the brick wall seems like such a large obstacle in your path.
As much as we’d like to hope that things will always go according to plan, we know better.
Life is not planned.
We can’t expect that the entire universe and all the energy bouncing around in it is going to sit in alignment with what we want. If that sounds a little woowoo to you, read this (it’s a little woo-ier to some, but you’ll get it, and clearly explains what that means.)
The goal, for the goals is to always expect the best, but to have covered all bases. That means at least spending time on working out the answers to ‘what would I do if … happened?’
Call it the back up plan, the contingency, the other route. Whatever suits you.
Having a “Plan B” for every step of your journey can save you a lot of time, not to mention frustration!
Now, Plan B is not ‘if this doesn’t work, then I’ll do this’. The goal is the same. The different route to it is plan B!
Imagine the difference between feeling stuck because your path is blocked, or calmly switching gears and moving to Plan B. It can make or break the fulfillment of your goals.
I love the story of the train driver who comes to a broken tree convering the railway line. The driver doesn’t keep banging into the tree, he has to think of other ways to get moving again. He could remove the tree, ask for help, reverse and find another route. It sometimes isn’t the preferred route, but he’s committed to getting the passengers to their destination, even if it means adding a little extra time to the journey.
It’s easy to forget that there are numerous paths leading to any desired outcome.
While we might be attracted to one path over another, ultimately the outcome is the most important thing, right?
In order to ensure momentum, take a few minutes to prepare an alternate plan for each part of your goal. Focus not only on alternate paths to the final goal, but alternate activities for each of your action steps.
Here is a simple way to identify viable alternate activities: as you review each step, consider the question,
“What would I do if this step or activity was not possible?”