“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail,” Benjamin Franklin once said. It was true when Franklin said it and it’s even truer today. If you don’t study for a test in school you’ll likely fail – and if you don’t learn how to set yourself up for success, you’ll likely fail at that, too.

So many businesses that were great ideas have failed because of poor preparation. But each prepared action you set in place boosts your confidence that you’re doing it right. Of course, you’ll come up against obstacles you haven’t anticipated, but you’ll be much more capable of facing and solving them if everything else is running smoothly.

Preparation is a necessity for every goal you set. You wouldn’t run in a marathon without being fit – or jump in to a diet or exercise plan if you haven’t set ironclad goals of what you want to accomplish – and in what timeframe.

The confidence you gain during the preparation process will help you visualize success in a way that won’t happen if you rush haphazardly into the dark. Planning puts you in the driver’s seat and helps you make important life choices that will take you to the point in life you want to be.

It also helps your inner wisdom figure out how to use what you learn in the preparation process. It also helps to gain confidence by mapping your life – past, present and future. By seeing a map of major times in your life, you’ll see where sometimes you went wrong and other times you were right.

You’ll likely see things you hadn’t noticed or thought of in the past and this will help formulate your goals for the future. It’s inspiring to create a vision board that’s a map of your life – or, you can choose to map it out in a journal and include lots of detail.

Without a step-by-step plan to reach your goals, you are much more likely to drift off track and perhaps never find your way back. By planning, you will have much more success in making the conscious changes that are necessary in your life.

Before setting long and short-term goals, think long and hard about what you want to create or accomplish. Then, chart the course, taking as much time as you need to anticipate the outcome of each step you take.

Then, you’re ready to implement your plan. The finalized plan will likely change in the future – and it won’t protect you against all of life’s U-turns and pitfalls. But you’ll know where to begin and what you have to do before you realize the success you desire.

Even a perfectly prepared plan of action will change as you move along – and it won’t insulate you against life’s adversities and U-turns. But preparing ahead will help you take up where you left off as soon as possible and keep you from experiencing ultimate failure.

Author: Eric

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