Have you thought about your future yet? Where you want your life to take you and how you can make it happen? The tricky thing with the future is, that before you know it, it is here, the future is the present and not as far away as you first imagined.
For some, they already have their life planned out. This is great, they know exactly what they want and when they plan to achieve it. Other people prefer to sing it and take each day as it comes and revel in the here and now. then there are the rest, the ones who kind of don’t really know what to do or what they want to happen and find themselves going along with life as it happens.
If you fall into the category of wanting to make a plan for your life, then this post is for you.
Making a clear plan of your future and creating a direction of how you want it to map out can help guide you to make sure you are living the life you want and are actively pursuing it. The main thing to remember is that your future isn’t set in stone. Your life goals aren’t end game and deviating from the plan isn’t always a bad thing.
Make A List
Choose a time frame and make a list of everything you want to achieve in this period of time. Let’s go with 5 years. Do you know what you want to happen in the next 5 years?
- Do you want to start or grow your family? Do you need to start planning for this now? Some people prefer to have options when it comes to planning a family, especially if they want to start having children later in life. If this is you check what options are available such as freezing your eggs. Make sure to ask what are my chances of pregnancy after egg freezing? This will give you a good idea if this option is for you.
- Do you want to change your career or progress within your current job role? If so, what do you need to do to make it happen and how long realistically will it take you to get there?
- Is travel something that is featuring highly in your plans? Where do you want to go? How much will you need to make this happen and how long will it take to get there?
Once you have a list of everything you want to do or even think you want to do, narrow it down. Is it all essential or are there some things that you aren’t so bothered about doing compared to other plans?
Create a Mood Board
OK, so bear with us here, we know this sounds like something you would do in middle school. But if you can envision what the next 5 years or so looks like for you, you can begin to make it possible. Make notes, create a mood board complete with pictures, drawings, post-it notes – include it all. Have some fun with your plan and create a tailored ideal life for you.
Include your loves, even dislikes, your plans and main points get it all on there. Visualise the changes, make the plans a reality, involve other people and really sell your goals to those around you. Does your employer know you have plans to move up through the ranks at work? If not tell them, maybe they can help you start to climb the ladder in the company.
Sure dreaming about what you want to do is fun, but don’t forget about your life right now. You still need to live your life, pay the bills, keep a roof over your head and so on!
If your future plans involve things which will require you to spend money on them, you need to save for that ‘rainy day’. Travel plans don’t pay for themselves, neither do down payments on a house or even starting your family or getting married.
Find a way to put some money away each month out of your paycheck to help you afford your new life plan and bring it one step closer to reality.
This also includes creating a retirement fund. We know this is such a long way away but the earlier you start to save, then the more you will have when the time eventually comes.
Do the math, $200 per month from age 22 will give you more than $37,000 in ten years (based on an 8% interest per year assumption for the duration). Look 20 years ahead and you will have accumulated over $122,000. By the time you hit 67, you could have a cool 1.2 million dollar nest egg to enjoy your golden years with.
In life, there are always going to be cheerleaders and naysayers. To help you reach your goals in the timescale you plan on, you want to be surrounded by as many positive people as possible. You need people who want to help you get you to where you are going.
Surround yourself with people you want to emulate and the kind of lifestyle you envision yourself having. This will help you to start making your goals a reality and put your dreams into motion.
Everyone needs help from time to time. Burning your bridges because people think differently or don’t want the same things you do can harm your chances of getting to where you need to be.
Whether in your personal or professional life, networking, maintaining relationships and connections are all essential for your future and indeed current happiness. After all, you never know when you will need to reach someone for help.
Reaching your goals may feel hard at times, but just remember, in the long run, it will all be worth it! So write those plans, take the first step and get moving forward with the rest of your life.