Are you happy with where you stand in life right now? If yes, you’re extremely lucky. If not, welcome to reality.
Humans are (almost) incapable of being 100% satisfied with their current situation, no matter how balanced and successful others consider it to be. This is because we tend to get to specific spots in life without any meaning, aim, or direction. To avoid this haphazard lifestyle, you need to learn how to make a life plan.
What is a life plan? How will it give you a higher life satisfaction? If it’s so amazing, then how do you formulate one?
Well, you’re lucky because you landed on the exact page where you’ll find answers to all these. So, hold on and let the ride of life-changing secrets begin!
What Is a Life Plan?
There’s no living human who wouldn’t have a wish or dream. There’s also a high chance that most people consider their wishes and dreams wholly unrealistic and unachievable. Therefore, the unproven yet giant fear of failure keeps them from trying to reach for the stars.
Guess what? If humans can get to the moon, live underwater, and fly, anything is possible. What’s especially possible to realize is the idea that you have in your mind.
You may wonder how you can bring this idea, wish, or dream to life. The simple answer is a life plan.
So, what is a life plan? Is it a booklet with a script of how your life is supposed to be? Or is it a defined outline of the exact steps you need to take every passing minute?
A life plan is none of these things. Instead, it is a written promise to yourself to try ticking off the goals that you want to accomplish. It is your mind in the form of words on a piece of paper.
But what if you’re just in your early 30s, unsure if these are the same goals you’d want in your 50s? There’s nothing to worry about! A life plan is entirely under your control. In truth, a good life plan is — and should be — flexible. There needs to be enough room for changes to let you grow and succeed down the road.
Why Is Life Plan Important?
If you’re only writing down what’s on your mind, and it’s not even a fixed document, why is it necessary at all?
Look at it this way. How many ideas do you get each day? Probably hundreds. How many do you end up remembering, let alone implementing?
The only thoughts that become a reality are the ones that you transfer from your mind to a piece of paper. From your mind into this world. That is how your ideas come to life.
Similarly, your goals, even if they are long-term, need to be brought to life. The only way to get the opportunity to fulfill these goals practically is by taking them out of your head.
Aside from that, a life plan is sort of a commitment. It’s like signing a legal document, but you’re the law-making authority. You’re committing to your life plan, after all. If your goals or priorities change along the way, you have a valid reason to alter it.
But for the most part, a life plan keeps you on track. It gives you the direction that you need to follow throughout the years. You always have your vision in front of you, so whatever you think of doing is coherent to your long-term plans.
How to Make a Life Plan
Now, let’s move to the best part: how to make a life plan.
There’s no defined strategy or hard rule when it comes to learning how to make a life plan. All you need to do is be true to yourself. On top of that, implement the following tips in the process so that you can have a realistic and achievable life plan that satisfies your needs.
1. Be Aware of Your Failures
Most plans require you to start with your strengths. Things that you have achieved in life, never messed up, are amazingly good at, etc. But that’s not the most authentic perspective of life.
The truth is, we all fail, and it happens more often than we’d like to accept. However, we need to be more accepting of our failures as they ultimately help us grow. Failures are proof that we’re trying.
If you start with your failures, you’ll instantly get a clear idea of which road you want to go down in the future. For one, failures show you the route that you’re genuinely making an effort on. Repetitive failures in one direction are a sign of your passion. On the other hand, consistently failing after many tries and changes is a sign that you need to turn away.
When you’re aware of your failures, you’ll get a clear direction to stick to right off the bat. Moreover, your failures will tell you precisely what you need to fix so that the rest of the journey becomes smooth.
Here’s an interesting article about overcoming failures: Why You Have the Fear of Failure (And How to Overcome It).
2. Identify Your Long-Term Vision and Values
Whatever you plan for the future must satisfy your morals and beliefs. Thus, before planning anything, you need to identify your life values. Doing so will keep you from developing a life plan that clashes with your spirituality and mental stability. Being in line with your values is highly crucial for a happy life.
In case you’re a firm believer in empathy, you need to ensure that your long-term plans do not harm the people around you. An empathetic individual cannot work for a makeup manufacturer that tests on animals, for example.
3. Evaluate Yourself
Based on your failures in the past and clear vision of the future, take a look back. Think of the things and events that are most prominent in your memory. Learn from them by taking the good and figuring out how to fix the bad. Know what you never want to repeat while picking up on the things that you want to continue.
Your past should not haunt you. Therefore, an in-depth evaluation is necessary before you head into the future.
4. Prioritize the Future
This is the time to list down your future plans chronologically. You’re not precisely devising a goal or plan at this point; you just need to prioritize things in the order that you want to achieve them.
For instance, if you’re currently 30 years old, getting a house within the next two years is perhaps your first priority. You may then want to get married at 35 years old. After that, you may want to start a new business venture.
Plan Your Goals and Structure an Action Plan
By now, you have a vision, and you’ve also prioritized your future. It’s time to put everything in an actionable form.
Start with devising SMART goals for each of your future plans. Once your goals are finalized, make an action plan out of them.
Basically, you need to break down your goals into small actionable and practical milestones. For example, to get a house, you need to save up money first. Your plan should include all the ways to save more money and get a suitable place for yourself.
This guide may also help you structure your action plan: How to Create an Action Plan and Achieve Your Personal Goals.
Ask for Support
You’re planning your life. You are the only one in charge of it, the only stakeholder in this deal. This is exactly why you need a supportive family and group of friends around you.
These are the people who motivate you to live life to its fullest and bring you back up when you’re exhausted. Your life plan is useless unless you are surrounded by those you want to live for.
Life Plan Template
Fill in this template however you would like to. It will serve as a simple yet thorough life plan:
In the end, it all comes down to you and your motivation to improve your life. If you want to be in a state of existence one day where you can be proud of your achievements based on your scales of judgment, a life plan is a way to go.
You have a free, easily applicable template in front of you. You also have enough reasons to put this template to good use. If you want, you are free to alter it to your liking and preferences.
There is no excuse to slack off anymore. Get on with your life plan right away so that you can look back and thank yourself for this very moment a few years from now!
More on Making a Life Plan
Featured photo credit: Glenn Carstens-Peters via unsplash.com