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What to do when the plan goes wrong

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What to do when the plan goes wrong 

I love having a plan. How about you?

But sometimes (maybe even a lot of the time) things don’t go to plan. 

I know it can be tough when the plan goes “wrong.”

It’s not the fact the plan goes “wrong” that counts (that’s bound to happen at some point); it’s what we do NEXT that matters.

At the start of each year I work on my annual plan, mapping out our big projects and priorities and really clarifying my vision for the year. Then, at the beginning of each quarter my team and I get together and review and tweak the plan.

The rest of the time, our trusty plan is with us almost 24/7… guiding our priorities, helping us meet deadlines, keeping us seeing the forest amongst all those trees.

But it’s not all peaches and cream.

Sometimes projects take longer than you think they will.

Or something comes in and blindsides you, diverting you temporarily off track.

Or you realise the thing you planned is not what you really need to be doing (it happens!).

And you find yourself in that uncomfortable place “outside” your plan.

And that can be a vulnerable place to be:

  • Negative self-talk can creep in - “I always do this / I’m getting it all wrong / This has just been a big waste of time”
  • Our confidence can take a hit - “I really thought I’d have this done by now, maybe I’m just not cut out for this”
  • We can find ourselves STUCK - “I feel like I’m in a vacuum / Will I EVER get past this? / I can’t seem to find a clear direction”
  • And it can be easy to hit OVERWHELM – “It’s too much! / I’m just running from one emergency to the next and not getting anywhere.”

The important thing when the chaos strikes is what you do next.

So, what do you do when nothing goes to plan?

Go back and start planning again…

Because the plan doesn’t have to be perfect.

Things can and will go wrong.

But the process of taking time out to really clearly see where you want to go and how you might get there is still an important one… and by staying faithful to a regular planning practice, you WILL be rewarded.