There is an English movie that came out a few years back, titled The Mechanic, which has a wonderful line that I find awe inspiring and motivating. The line is simply:
Victory loves preparation.
Anybody will tell you that the two basic ingredients of success or victory are hard work and preparation. Today, let us devote some time in this column to finding out why it is that victory or success loves preparation.
Scottish born American educator and inventor Alexander Graham Bell, better known for his invention of the telephone, said, “Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.”
Whatever be your chosen field, wherever it might be that you are looking for success — the world of academics if you are a student or the corporate world if you are a part of the work force — preparation is a crucial step.
This comes before anything else and as soon as you have set your target, preparation is the bird on whose wings you will travel to your destination.
You can equate being prepared to setting youself a goal and then having a plan in place to achieve it.
Preparation itself is composed of two core factors. These are planning and implementation. As this insightful saying has it:
Plan your work. Work your plan.
Planning is also called forethought. It is the application of a streamlined thought process to various activities leading to the achievement of certain set goals. Planning is an indicator of intelligent behaviour as the thought process that it uses should be able to make sure the plan is refined at every stage and combines well with other aspects of your life.
Some basic steps in the process of planning:
Establish goals: This is about identifying specific goals. The reason for setting and selecting a particular goal should be clear to you. Try to break down your goal in quantitative and qualitative terms.
Write this down so that whenever the need arises to remind yourself of why you set yourself a certain goal, you will know exactly where to look.
Identify resources: You have to know what or who could be a resource to help you achieve your goals.
If you are a student and there is a certain subject in which you have set yourself a goal for improvement then a teacher or a classmate who may help you perform better is the resource you need to identify.
Establish goal-related tasks: To complete any goal there are tasks that need to be done in order to achieve it. These can be small tasks like marking portions of a chapter for daily revision, leading to the completion of a chapter in, say, three days.
Prioritise goal and tasks: This is about evaluating the value of the tasks and then ordering them in a sequence in order of their importance in accordance with the goal that you have to reach.
Create a timeline: You have to set up a timeline for yourself to make sure you are not overreaching in your goals and to help you stay in control of your efforts.
While making a timeline consider your own strengths and weaknesses and allot time to various tasks accordingly.
Evaluate: Evaluating your progress from time to time is important as it helps you stay focused.
Make a weekly progress report and see how far you have come with the help of planning.
Important: Remember to identify alternate courses of action because at times even the best laid plans are thrown off course by unanticipated events.
Readers, if you have questions related to your life or life skills send a mail to Aanandika Sood and she will certainly have a response for you.