Sunday, February 18, 2007

Curious about Planning: How Much Time Do You Devote to It? Is It Worthwhile and Important?

Productivity is never an accident. It is always the result of a commitment to excellence, intelligent planning and focused effort.” - Paul Meyer, French writer

Planning is bringing the future into the present so that you can do something about it now.” - Alan Lakein, American businessman

As you know by now, I am into self-improvement - reading and lots of listening to books, tapes, CDs and teleseminars. Every course I have taken has stressed the importance of planning. We decide upon our goals, intentions and commitments; then map out a plan for achieving them. Once we have a strong and feasible plan, we must start taking the action steps outlined by our plan.

Not always easy - but certainly necessary. Often, the plans get off track and go astray. If you run your own business, as I do, getting control of our time is imperative. I also feel that it is necessary to be flexible with our plans and what we plan to accomplish. This is where the systems that I wrote about last week come in. I feel strongly that taking time to plan is all important, but we must also realize that we must revisit and revise those plans regularly - often daily!

I found many quotations that used planning as the operative word. I think you will enjoy them. Some are wise, some are humorous and many have great lessons to learn.

We’ll start with the general quotations:

  • Plans are nothing; planning is everything.” - Dwight D. Eisenhower, American President
  • My own life planning has always been 10 years ahead. I knew when I was 13 that this was what I wanted to be. Right now I feel about nine months behind where I would have liked to be at age 46. Ten years from now, I'd like to be doing what I'm doing and collecting more interest.” - Chubby Checker, American musician
  • Let our advance worrying become advance thinking and planning.” - Winston Churchill, English statesman
  • If you employed study, thinking, and planning time daily, you could develop and use the power that can change the course of your destiny.” - W. Clement Stone, American businessman
  • Planning to write is not writing. Outlining, researching, talking to people about what you're doing, none of that is writing. Writing is writing.” - E. L. Doctorow, American author

For a bit of humor and/or contrary thought:

  • Like religion, politics, and family planning, cereal is not a topic to be brought up in public. It's too controversial.” - Erma Bombeck, American journalist
  • Success is blocked by concentrating on it and planning for it... Success is shy - it won't come out while you're watching.” - Tennessee Williams, American dramatist
  • Men often oppose a thing merely because they have had no agency in planning it, or because it may have been planned by those whom they dislike.” - Alexander Hamilton, American politician
  • And I think that still is true of this business - which is basically research and development - that you probably spend more time in planning and training and designing for things to go wrong, and how you cope with them, than you do for things to go right.” - Alan Shepard, American astronaut
  • Meekness: Uncommon patience in planning a revenge that is worth while.” - Ambrose Bierce, American journalist
  • When we are planning for posterity, we ought to remember that virtue is not hereditary.” - Thomas Paine, English writer
  • Adventure is just bad planning.” - Roald Amundsen, Norwegian explorer

Here are the two that I plan to concentrate upon this coming week - and into the future:

  • Without leaps of imagination, or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning.” - Gloria Steinem, American activist
  • No-one gets an iron-clad guarantee of success. Certainly, factors like opportunity, luck and timing are important. But the backbone of success is usually found in old-fashioned, basic concepts like hard work, determination, good planning and perseverance.” - Mia Hamm, American athlete

“Right on” to two inspiring women! Have a wonderful week, and I would love to hear about your plans.