I am a productivity and organization freak. I’m always looking for ways to get more done or at least this is what I’ve done for a long time.
I’ve realized that it’s worthless to plan until the end because in life, you don’t know what you don’t know. In other words, you can create the perfect plan by days, by weeks even by hours towards launching your business but unless you’ve done this tens of times and you know with a certain degree of certainty, usually over 90% what will happen, planning until the end is stupid.
Because Murphy’s laws actually apply in business. Nothing will go out as planned. Some tasks will take less. Some tasks will take more. Some will be canceled and you’ll discover that you need to do new things, things you weren’t even aware of.
Sometimes unexpected things will happen as having your VA dropping out or realizing that your KW research (keyword research) is all wrong.
So it’s more or less worthless to create a long term plan.
What should you do instead?
Figure it out on the way. In other way, know where you want to go and then take steps towards that direction. You’ll never know everything that you must do but you’ll know the next task that you must take in almost 100% of circumstances.
Eben Pagan made a nice example out of this. Success, building a business, a career or anything else is like walking on a stairwell.
On this stairwell, you can only see the next step. You know that it will lead to where you want but you can’t see in front of it. You can consider that it’s surrounded by fog or whatever you want.
Now, most people out of lack of confidence will not walk on that stairwell since they want to know the entire road ahead. This is a luxury very hard to find. But you can simply walk on one stair, get it done and then the next thing you must do will come to you in one form or another.
You must simply trust the process that you’ll eventually get there, don’t get all analytical and try to predict things with accuracy (this may work in the corporate world, but remember, they have entire teams and procedures there) and simply walk, one foot in front of another. You may hit gold after two meters or two thousands but as long as you walk, you’ll get there.
How to put this into practice?
Determine what you want to achieve (for example, to write an ebook) and then simply ask yourself what is the next step towards doing that. Write it down and work on it. Once it’s done, ask yourself about the next step and do this until the book is completed.
Don’t make the mistake to plan the entire course as this will crush your creativity. You want to be able to take the best decisions in any given moment and not be kept in a strict framework where you simply have to paint by numbers.
Paint by numbers may work in many fields and you may even build some businesses using this principle but when it comes to IM, it’s awful.
In IM, it’s enough to know what you want and focus on the next action. One step in front of another.