The benefits of planning

“Plans are useless, but planning is essential” – General Dwight Eisenhower

Planning is something I have always done. I’ve done this for as long as I can remember. Planning helps me to structure my thoughts, see my goals and generally be more productive.

Although I have never wavered with regards to the importance I place on planning, I have not always been able to or chosen to prioritise the process of planning. In fact, some of the best things have come from not having a plan.

Whilst planning is important to me, I am not rigid about it, and I have come to understand that just because I haven’t written it down, doesn’t mean I’ve not planned it.

As a busy mum, sometimes their simply isn’t the time to sit down and write a plan.

That said, I’ve always got a notebook and planner on the go, as well as an electronic system. Most of the time these work together but, as with most systems, there are cracks.

Rather frustratingly, I always come up with a better system soon after starting a new one. I guess there is always room for improvement.

I see the benefits of planning being:

  • The opportunity to collect your thoughts
  • The chance to structure your thoughts
  • A place to offer a time frame to your thoughts
  • The opportunity to highlight any gaps in your thinking
  • A visual way of tracking achievements and successes or just ticking things off a list
  • A chance to deal with anything you haven’t done before it is too late
  • A way of thinking ahead rather than living day to day
  • A stress reliever – planning can help to break large tasks down and therefore combat those feelings of being overwhelmed
  • A way of helping you to achieve your goals

One of the things lots of people enjoy planning are holidays, sometimes several years into the future. Holiday planning is lovely because it feels like a lovely reward for working hard and if gives us something to look forward to.

For some holiday inspiration why not check out some of the lonely planet guides available.

Do you plan? What approach do you take?

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