If you don’t have a long-term plan, it doesn’t mean you won’t achieve anything or become somebody relevant. Stay committed to the great things you can do in the short-term, they’ll bear fruits that will blow your mind later.
Five years ago, I was a depressed and easily irritated eighteen-year-old who had suddenly found myself in the university. I hadn’t figured out my life in any way, all I knew was that I wanted to do Optometry, but had been admitted reading Computer Science.
I had spent my three months after senior high school reading extensively about optometry on the small Samsung GT-E2222 that was my “after high school” gift from my mom. Prior to that, I had read from The Mirror in my second year of high school that Glaucoma was on the increase in the country, but the specialists were woefully inadequate. Thus, the cause and response spirit within me saw it as an opportunity to reach out and help Ghana. Coupled with the fact that I had been learning that I didn’t need to be a pastor, evangelist or preacher for God to use me, I had imagined how I will treat my patients with the love of God and how I will sometimes pray with those who believe so they could get their healing. So, you can imagine how crushed I was to discover that I hadn’t made the grades for Optometry and thus had got my second option which was computer science.
My first class was a C++ algorithm class. I had no idea what the lecturer was driving at, I could easily solve the problems with my math, but it became a challenge writing algorithm for it. I was sad, mostly indoors, crying often, but always appearing cheerful when people were around, so no one really knew what was happening to me or what I was going through. Those who cared enough to come close were kept at arm’s length, as I hadn’t really been taught to trust anyone and my high school best friend had also become engrossed in his course as a medical student, so there was literally no one to share the frustrations with et al. All through this, I literally had no plan what I was gonna use my life for. Cause I had built my life around becoming an optometrist and then bam, life hits me in the face with something I was so clueless about.
Five years down the lane, I have become a highly effective and motivated person, actively pursuing the things I’m passionate about, loving people as unconditionally as I can and as I would allow the Holy Spirit to teach me. I’ve mentored people indirectly and had some young people look up to me and get inspired by my life and my zeal for the things I do. Unfortunately, none of them knows that 5 years ago, I was more clueless than they currently are. If anyone had asked me for a 5-year plan, there’s no way I would have known to tell them that my life would become the fun and immensely intense life it currently is.
For those who panic when asked about long-term plans and for those who have them but are so restrained by it that they can barely actually enjoy life or have fun. I dare say that it’s okay not to have a plan, that it’s okay to live as committed as you can within the short-term. It’s okay to learn the little you can today and leave tomorrow to cater for itself.
When the year began, a friend asked me what plans I had for Mimispassion, because you know last year, I had this whole #15DaysOfPurpose thingy. But in 2017, I really had no plans for Mimispassion, all I knew was that I wanted to keep on writing and getting better at inspiring people through the things I write and so that’s exactly what I have been doing. But you know what, my decision to do that has spilled over into a passion to help people develop potential which has led me to meet some of the most wonderful influences in my life yet. Writing has given me a job, offered me freelance opportunities and has connected me to some brilliant writers both from Ghana and outside that have shaped my writing to what it has become today.
I could go on and on about the lots of unplanned things that turned out great, but I’ll like you to take away these three things about plans, purposes and pursuits.
Find your purpose and keep moving:
My life turned around when I got into the arena of purpose, learning about it and working to discover what my specific calling is. I spent a lot of time reading books, listening to sermons and communicating regularly with God and that made me turn out the way I have. My favourite purpose writer and preacher, Dr Myles Munroe of blessed memory said, “where purpose isn’t known, abuse is inevitable”. If you know what your purpose is, you just need to keep moving. You can make the plans, write them down and break them down for easy accomplishment. But if you don’t move, the plans would look great on paper and wild in your head and there would be no manifestation. Meanwhile, it is the manifestations that would give wings to the plans and thus engineer your fulfilment. Find purpose, commit your plans to God and then just keep moving. It’s okay if you don’t have a 5 year or 20-year plan, but In the short-term, better your craft, increase your knowledge, impact and influence the situations and people around you positively Click To Tweet. That is a sure way to keep moving.
Maintain an attitude of excellence:
Life is such that, at times you wouldn’t realize the need for something whilst you are going through it. You only realize its impact and influence upon retrospection. It has the danger of making you live life slothful and have a lackadaisical attitude to and about things. But be careful not to get sucked in by the experiences, give it your best, pick your lessons from it and keep moving. When I started Mimispassion, it was because I sought an avenue to put my writing into practice aside focusing on the awesome things that young people were doing. I didn’t think it would get to the point where it would get me paid jobs. But because I kept an open mind and continuously gave it the best I could muster then, it has worked out well and keeps getting better. It’s not every experience that has to bring in money before you realize it’s importance. Sometimes leaving a legacy is more than leaving behind a lot of money and properties. “Whatever your hands find doing, do it as unto the Lord – give it your very best”. Don’t slack, keep moving, and maintain an excellent attitude about it.
Have long-term plans, but master the short-term:
Finally, brethren, don’t make huge plans and then go to sleep. The plans wouldn’t lift themselves off the paper to come to life. You need to pump the life into those marvellous plans. Little drops of water they say makes a mighty ocean.Have the big picture in mind, but keep your eyes and heart steeled to the short term. Click To Tweet
Work hard at it, excel at what you’re doing in the short term so much so that the long-term plans would applaud you for your efforts. Keeping in mind that you aren’t racing against anyone but your best self and he can only be found by your current self. Don’t let the magnitude of the long-term plan prevent you from enjoying today. Don’t let the long term make you a slave that doesn’t get to enjoy his labor. Labor in love and in joy for the glorious reward ahead that you want to attain. Keep pushing, believing and living. You’ll most definitely make it there.
I trust that if you feared plans and got jitters whenever someone asks if you have a 5, 10,15 or 20-year plan, you’ve been encouraged that you can still get somewhere even if you don’t have those plans now. Don’t take this as an excuse not to dream big or plan. Enjoy what you do and excel at it, the fruits will return to you when you least expect it to.Dream big and plan, but don’t let it trap you into an infinite loop of pleasing a piece of writing on paper. Click To Tweet
If you weren’t part of the Mimispassion family during the #15DaysOfPurpose, download the study here.
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