“It’s such a paradox: how can we plan our lives, careers, or anything else, when things are changing all the time and we have no idea what will happen next month, or even next week?” That’s what author Erin Ewart writes in her latest article in the Careers for Social Impact blog post.
So, how can we balance this need to plan for the future with the very real knowledge that we have no idea what the future holds?
Ewart has some great advice:
- Track your thoughts: try setting aside 5-10 minutes at the end of the day to answer a few quick prompts: (1) What was energizing for me today and why? (2) What was draining for me today and why? (3) How was today overall on a scale of 1-5, and what bigger picture reflections/implications can I take away?
- Plan in smaller chunks: try to focus your planning around the next three months, which seems like about as far out as any of us can reasonably imagine right now.
- Take action & focus on what you can control: If you’re job searching, this might look like taking just 30 minutes to create a target list of organizations or start updating your resume or LinkedIn profile. Remember: one step at a time.
I recently listened to this video series from the authors of Designing Your Life about how to plan during these times – I recommend checking it out! I had two key takeaways, which were things I already knew but were really helpful to be reminded of:
- Set the bar low and clear it often: create small, bite-sized tasks for yourself that build toward your bigger goals. Accomplishing these smaller tasks gives you momentum and motivation to keep going toward those bigger goals, which feel so overwhelming right now.
- Designers build their way forward: we learn through taking action, and we have to get out of our heads and try things. If you’re feeling stuck or stumped about what to do next, DO something. Reach out to someone and ask for their advice, try a small experiment in the direction you’re considering, even get some exercise to clear your mind.
Read the rest of this article here: https://careersforimpact.com/2020/05/22/how-to-plan-when-planning-feels-impossible/
Here, also, is a list of Careers for Social Impact resources for getting your self started.