Do we really need extensive planning???
Last night, my brother and I were discussing something and my brother said
“It will take a lot of planning to succeed (in the particular field we were discussing)”.
And without any thought, I replied “We shouldn’t plan, we must start doing. Planning won’t take us anywhere.”
That was the end of the conversation. It was late at night and we went to bed.
I prepared my bed and tried to sleep but couldn’t. My thoughts were elsewhere.
I struggled to sleep and started to think. Do we really need extensive planning to succeed? Can’t we be successful if we don’t plan?
As I twisted and turned in my bed, my thoughts went back to another decade. I began to think about things I had done without proper planning and did a good job.
So let me take you to on a journey deep into my thoughts, into my past and show you how one simple thing let me be something more than what I could have been.
The Farewell Party 2004
That was the last day of my school life. Our juniors had organized a farewell party for us, the outgoing 10th-grade batch. We were having fun. There were many programs, dancing and singing and other fun activities.
At the end of the day, the Master of Celebrations was asking students to come up on the stage and show their skills, in dancing or singing or anything that they could do to entertain one last time.
I, as always was sitting with my best friends and enjoying the party when my name was called. I was shocked and all my friends asked me to go on the stage and do my thing.
So here let me tell you something about myself. I was shy yet friendly. I had never stepped upon a stage in my life. I had never spoken in the microphone for more than a few seconds.
I was good at comedy. I use to recite funny Shayari (couplets) in Urdu to entertain my friends. And many people knew this.
Now that my name had been called, I had to go on the stage and entertain the audience of about 300-400 students, teachers, and other school staff.
I went on the stage, took the microphone from the MC and looked at the audience. I was petrified, my legs were shaking and my hands were sweating. My vision got blur and I couldn’t think anything.
I gathered my strength, tried to think and remembered one little couplet. And I started to recite it. The audience was supportive, they laughed and screamed and enjoyed.
I got a little confidence and I started to recite more. The couplets were funny and the audience laughed.
Oh! Wait that was no mission, there was no planning in it. It was a surprise. But I did well. I don’t know if people still remember that but I do remember every bit of that fateful day.
In the years that followed, I took up every chance to entertain the audience in every event I could.
Few years later, during my undergraduate course, my lecturers were supportive and encouraged me to participate in a debate and speech competition. I did well in those events, won many prizes. And then one fine day my lecturer asked me to host the Independence Day celebrations held on the college campus.
Being the Master of Celebrations
Just like that I was the Master of Celebrations for every event that happened in my college. My seniors from the Under Graduate College do remember one such successful event. I went on winning debates and speech competitions’ and kept on hosting events until I finished my masters.
Being a Technical Trainer
During my Undergraduate days, I was short on money and I asked a friend to refer me some part-time job to keep my pockets full. A friend suggested me to start teaching computers. I was good at computers and I use to repair computers every now and then.
I was the IT guy amongst my friends.
My kind friend referred me to an institute where they needed a trainer to train students in computer hardware and networking. I attended the interview and got the position.
For the next few years, I was a technical trainer. I have hundreds of hours of paid teaching experience. The pay was good, teaching was fun. I enjoyed sharing my knowledge and it kept my pockets full for some time.
Do you think I had planned to be a debater or a Master of Celebrations or a Technical Trainer?
No, I had never planned anything. It just happened. And I happen to be good at whatever I did.
Looking back, the day I climbed on that stage I had no idea that I would be spending so much time on stage. I had no idea that I would be good at speaking, good at teaching and good at entertaining people. I had no idea.
But, we can never connect the dots forwards; we can only connect the dots backwards. Now if on that fateful day for some reasons I had not climbed on the stage, I think I would have been scared of public speaking. I would never have met so many people. I couldn’t have had the experience that I have now.
So tell me, friends, what do you say? Do we need to plan to be successful? Or should we go with the flow?
Things work differently for different people. Planning didn’t work for me. Being impromptu worked out well for me and I have gained experience and success with it.
Think and decide what works for you. Do you work better when you have planned everything? Or do you work better without any planning?
Whatever might work for you, but one thing is sure that you will have to try doing different things in different ways to know what works for you.
What worked for me might not work for you. But try to gain experience at every chance you get.
I hope my story has made you think. And I hope if you are planning to start something, then do start and stop procrastinating with the planning part.
Planning and Procrastination
I have come across many people who plan to do something and plan it for years and in turn lose valuable time.
If you want to be a blogger, then start blogging. If you want to be a writer then start writing. If you have something in mind that you want to do, then don’t hesitate, don’t spend time planning instead start doing and make learn things on the go.
Do what works for you. For me being impromptu helped. Try and find out what works for you.
Note: If you are planning to change your habits, then do take a look at the book I am currently reading; The Habit of Change by Charles Duhigg.
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