Planning isn’t sexy or exciting. But what I’ve learned in my many years around the sun and from my time practicing law is that if you want to reach goals, level up, and have the life you dream of:
- you must be resilient
- you must embrace the pivot
- you must be consistent with a plan
That sounds like a tall order so let’s break it down a little bit.
First, Let’s Talk About You
How well do you bounce forward (instead of back) when you experience change? Sometimes we accelerate with change, and sometimes it knocks us flat on our backsides. What makes those experiences different? Why don’t we pivot consistently? Resilience is your ability to bounce forward (instead of back), to take life head on, and to make the most of pivots in life- to find opportunity in the obstacles. So, to answer those questions, the reason we don’t pivot consistently is because we lack resilience- and a huge part of resilience is having a plan.
Putting Your Foot Down
I recently chatted with Sam Glover, recovered attorney, author, and Founder of Lawyerist. Sometimes, putting your foot down means you walk from a law career (true for both Sam and I!) and sometimes it means you stop accepting less than you’re worth in other situations. But either way, part of resilience is just deciding that you’ve reached a point where you can no longer accept the status quo and you’ve been called to make a change.
Initiating A Pivot
Putting your foot down also means you will most likely be initiating a pivot in your life. And that pivot, if you want it to be sustainable and successful, needs a plan. It’s important to take a moment and decide what you want next (not the next 10-years… take it one baby step at a time!) That alone will highlight or open paths to get you to that next stop on your journey. For Sam, this meant closing a successful practice in search of a life more fulfilled and aligned with his own values, which happened to be Lawyerist, something he had been building on the side for several years.
If you have no idea what your next step is, you very well might miss the path.
“I showed up in law school without a clear reason for being there. I didn’t have a mission. I didn’t have a grand thing I wanted to do. And this stayed with me the entire time I practiced. My firm went through several iterations until I eventually shut the doors. I didn’t have a plan.” -Sam Glover
Pivoting In Purpose
The plan can be your enemy because there needs to be a foundational start point, a purpose or higher calling. It is so difficult to get up every single day and pour into something that’s lacking a heart-based higher purpose. When you pivot in your purpose, you will find that the planning side of things is much easier because you aren’t only relying on your head to guide you- you also have your heart.
Making a plan will make you more resilient. This might be the pivot you are missing. Imagine your next step and then list 3 ways you might get there. If you don’t change anything, the same things will keep happening. You’ll still feel the same anxiety or the stress or the fatigue. I used to dread Sundays because they were the thing that led to Mondays. That would still be true if I hadn’t made my own pivots into my purpose. One of the questions Sam answers most often is how to gracefully and safely get out of doing work that doesn’t feel good but provides security. Which really confirms for me that the need for this information on purpose and pivoting and resilience is so timely and necessary.
- Adam Markel, author of The I Love My Life Challenge