Everyone wants to have success in life. When I speak of success I am referring to success in everything we set out to do, not just financial success. To have success we must put ourselves in a position to succeed and preparation is the dominant factor in reaching this goal. Unfortunately, preparation can seem to be boring and tedious. Even though I am well aware of the benefits of preparation, I continue to struggle with having the discipline to put all of my efforts into “prep work”. We live in a world of instant gratification. Fast food, internet and many more of the things we use daily, come to us with little or no preparation on our part. As a result, the things that require more time and preparation, can feel slow, boring and sometimes even frustrating. Regardless, preparation is key in our success and we must find ways to reinforce that belief so as to motivate ourselves during times of preparation. Reflecting on what brought us success is a tool that can be helpful. Take a look at the following examples to see not only how the “prep work” results in a more successful outcome but in the long run, might create less work.
1. Vacationing – Familiarizing yourself with your destination and the activities that are available as well as creating a budget and schedule will impact the success of your trip.
2. Sports – Practicing and physical preparation as well as diet and sleep will have a direct result on your achievements.
3. College- What was developed in Grade School and High School? Location and size of college as well as how it fits in to what your strengths are academically and socially, will have a direct impact on your chances to succeed.
4. Painting – Preparing the walls. Repair work, taping, primer and selection of paint. Not only will the “prep work” affect the outcome but it can avoid having to do things over again.
The end result is always directly impacted by preparation and although preparation is usually boring it is instrumental in our success. Through reflection I have come to the conclusion that almost all of my failures have come as a direct result of my lack of preparation and only by reflecting on that, am I able take responsibility for what I decide to succeed in next.
“Success always comes when preparation meets opportunity”Henry Hartman
“It is better to be prepared for an opportunity and not have one than to have an opportunity and not be prepared.”
Whitney M. Young, Jr
You would love Franklin Covey seminars. One of their big things is that 1 minute of planning = 5 minutes of productivity. It's not always bad, though, to just jump into something. Sometimes I think I get too caught up in planning/preparing rather than just going for it.
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