In a mere eight days, we will be facing a day that occurs once every ten years.

In eight days, we will be starting the following:

  • A new year
  • A new month
  • A new quarter
  • A new decade

I am looking excitedly at the prospects of the new year.

I’ve been working on a project for the last six months that is very important to me.

It took me more time to work on this project.

It took a larger investment of money and effort than I initially expected.

Now my project is starting to gain traction, and I’m excited with the momentum I’ve built around the project.

This project will have a significant impact on the growth of my business.

I had the best of intentions when I started the project earlier this year.

I had a grand vision for what I wanted to accomplish.

I worked tirelessly on the project.

After a couple of months of relentless effort, I took a moment and paused.

As I pondered my progress, I felt like I had been spinning my wheels.

I felt like I was stuck in a rut.

I paused to question why things had unfolded the way they had.

I was frustrated, and I wanted to get out of the rut, gain traction, and make progress toward the goal of my project.

It boggled my mind that I had worked so hard and received minimal results.

I had grand intentions.

I had worked my tail off.

Why was I stuck?

As I examined my situation, I realized I had failed to plan.

While I had invested time in building a vision of what I wanted to accomplish, I didn’t take the time to develop a plan that would make my vision a reality.

It was as if I built a castle in the sky that lacked a ladder for me to reach the castle.

The ladder in my example is the action plan that would narrow down the work I needed to perform to get to my castle.

Without a clear action plan, I was swept around by shiny new objects that deflected my attention from achieving the end goal of my project.

I found myself repeatedly jumping from one tactic to a new tactic to get closer to my castle.

Each time I started a new tactic, I had to go through a new learning curve and establish a new set of behaviors.

It’s no wonder now that I got stuck in a rut because I was continually starting over.

With the constant changing of tactics, I didn’t give myself enough time to let the tactic get results.

Each time I started something new, it was like I was planting a new seed.

It takes time for the new seed to germinate.

With my impatience, it was watching the seed and getting disappointed that the seed was not growing.

As soon as the seed sprouted above the dirt, I plucked it out and asked why it wasn’t a full-grown plant yet.

If I had taken a bit more time upfront to develop an action plan, I would have been less distracted by new shiny objects.

My action plan would have defined the exact actions I needed to perform to get to my objective.

I failed to heed the wisdom of one of America’s greatest founding founders, Benjamin Franklin, when he said the following:

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!”

To increase the success rate of your next project, take time in the beginning to develop a plan to achieve success.

By creating a plan, you will spend less time working on the project, and you will increase your success rate.

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