Have a plan - just in case

01:43, Feb 07 2013
Jane Butler Out of the rut
Jane Butler Out of the rut

We'd be naive to expect our journey to achieving our goals to be easy. It just ain't all plain sailing out there on the ocean of life.

While I hope it will be mostly easy to keep your resolution, it's a good idea to have plans in place to strengthen your resolve when adversity strikes. I refer to the hurdles, the wild cards, the unexpected as "blocks and stops".

And I encourage you to know that they are going to happen and to plan for them. Take some time to think what could create a problem for you, and then consider a strategy for dealing with each one.

Consider the 60-something-year-old who has been saving for an overseas trip in her retirement. She has been planning this for much of her working life and then the bottom drops out of her investment and her travel fund is gone. She thought it was safe and secure, and it was for a while, but then an unlucky strike left her with no savings.

What are her options?

She could defer her trip; or turn the holiday into a working holiday. Being a Willing Worker On Organic Farms [known as a woofer] in Italy wouldn't be all bad now would it?


With 20/20 hindsight, this woman would wish she had considered this risk much earlier and varied her investments.

This reminds us that what is perceived as safe isn't necessarily safe, so make sure you have a Plan B.

The good news for us is that we are just setting out on our goalaccomplishing journey in 2013 - it's a great time to consider what could go wrong and come up with a plan to deal with those scenarios.

Having said that, even the best-laid plans can go awry.

When something bad happens to knock our goal off course, we may feel fear. Fear can be viewed as false expectations appearing real.

I work with clients to overcome fear using fire, an acronym for focus, ignite, respond and excite.

Focus refers to taking the time to look at the problem and identify exactly what it is.

Ignite encourages you to come up with ideas for dealing with the problem.

Respond refers to you taking action or knowing how to if something unexpected occurs to overcome or circumnavigate the problem.

Excite is deciding how to celebrate your achievement.

Once the initial shock, horror of the unexpected, has faded you can view this block or stop as an excuse to discontinue or as an opportunity to grab life by the jugular and move forward.

Which one will you choose?

Go for it: live your dream. After all, dreams are just goals with dates on them.

The Marlborough Express