Waiting for Talent
Part 2: Making a Plan
It can be said that many people make plans. It can be said that artists, and more appropriately here, photographers make plans. Certainly. I am not by all means saying I am the only one who makes plans. However, what I am saying is that there are plans and then there are plans. The important question is, which one did you make?
For example, It is easy to say on January 1st: “This year I will start a photography business.” Or “this year I will complete a specific project.” Anyone can say that. It’s no different than saying “this year I will stop smoking” or “this year I will exercise regularly,” or loose weight, or kick off other unhealthy habits. Announcing it is certainly an important step, but the most difficult part is doing it. The real challenge is making a detailed plan about how you are going to accomplish this, how you are going to stick to your decision through thin and thick, through easy times and hard times. In other words, the difficult part is making a plan that will generate success in the long term.
Making a long term plan is not just saying “I am going to do this.” Certainly, saying that you are going to do something is better than not saying anything. It is taking an important decision, making a commitment and, hopefully, getting started. I say “hopefully” because many people take decisions everyday but not all of them carry these decisions to completion and become successful.
It is fair to say that we all have goals. However, it is also fair to say that some of us will reach their goals while that others will not. After all, things happen. For example, some goals are simply unrealistic. And, things happen along the way to reaching our goals: we get discouraged, we run out of steam, we lose interest: what once was something we had to achieve at all costs now seems relatively unimportant. Life does get in the way. Unexpected things happen, things that need to be taken care of immediately, things that force us to push aside less important things, such as new year resolutions. As the saying goes: ‘the best laid plan . . .’ The implications being that no matter how well we plan, things often work out in unpredictable fashion.
But the best laid plan should have built into it the possibility that these things can happen. The best laid plan should have built into it the possibility of failure. Not all of the things I just mentioned need to be accounted for because not everything happens to everyone, but some of these things should be expected to happen. In other words, a good plan, a solid plan, a plan designed for success, must have built into it provisions for adversity.
Adversity is something we must expect. It is not a matter of if, it is a matter of when. Adversity will strike, we just don’t know when or where. And if we are poorly prepared, if our plan does not have built into it provisions about dealing with adversity, we will most likely quit whenever we encounter it. We will quit not because we want to quit or because we are “natural born quitters.” We will quit because we do not know what to do in front of adversity. Rather than fight back, we resent it. We believe that this was not expected to happen. What was supposed to happen is being rewarded for taking the decision to do something difficult. As it stand, or so we believe, we are being punished for trying to do what others do not have the courage of doing.
Perhaps. Certainly, as logic would have it we should be rewarded. But then, life is not always logical. And after all,this is not be about reward. Instead, it is about perseverance and tenatiousness. In other words, doing this is not about someone owning us something. It is about us us owning something to ourselves. And this something that we owe to ourselves is reaching our goal and sticking to our plan. You can put it a variety of ways, but in the end it is about not quitting. It is about moving forward, regardless.
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