If tomorrow was the first day (of your new life)…would you be ready?
Right now it feels like this is never going to end. In fact, days blend into one another, weekends and weekdays blur, and happy hour is no longer reserved for 5 o’clock.
Remember your first day of school, or a new grade, or first day at your new job? Remember how you prepared? Picked out clothes, got a new backpack or briefcase, got your books and supplies all ready, put your name in them and got them all organized?
It’s time for that. If it all opened up tomorrow, would you be behind? Scrambling – to fit into your favorite go-to pants after gaining the “Covid-19” like I did? Could you even find those pants? I don’t know about you but my laundry has mostly been sweatshirts and stretchy pants! Do you know what you would do first, second? We’ve gotten ourselves so used to waiting patiently (or not so patiently) that we may find ourselves caught off guard when that day comes – and it will come.
The day will come but things won’t be the same. Our jobs and businesses may look different, our teams may not all be there, and if we’re business owners, our customers may not know we’re back. We need to be ready to get things rolling – in whatever way that may look like. We need to build a plan.
“A goal is a dream with a plan and a deadline.” ― Harvey MacKay
Here are a few steps to build your plan:
If you lost your job, your goal may be to find another one – is it in the same field or is this the opportunity to do something different – a field you’ve always wanted to get into? What qualifications are required? If you lack any, what can you be working on right now to position yourself better for a new role? If you’re a business owner, how will your business look going forward?
2. Pick a date.
This is KEY. None of us has a crystal ball and knows when this thing will be over, and the reality is it could be a gradual ease back in kinda thing. However, if we knew it was a certain date, we would be preparing with that date in mind. If we knew we had exactly 4 weeks, for example, our list would look one way. If we had 2 weeks, it would look a bit different. So, pick a date. For now it’s a guess – it’s arbitrary. We’ll work towards that date until we get new information. When we do, we’ll adjust for it. What we don’t want to happen is to get so “comfortable” in our holding pattern that we’re caught off guard when we get the green light.
3. What must be true?
If that’s the date, then what must be true on that date? Would you open your businesses doors? Send a note to all your customers? Pull your team together? What would you tell them? You may not have all the answers today, but assume the date you picked was real – and plan for it given the information you have today. Start a new list of things you would do that first day and week. Write drafts of the notes of what you would communicate to whom.
4. Get ready!
Get your clothes picked out, laundry caught up, make a menu, start a new journal/planner/notebook (after all the previous 2020 is out the window at this point!!) – all the things you would do before starting that new school, job, etc.
Humans are meant to have purpose. Part of our struggle right now is not knowing what’s next and not being able to plan. By giving ourselves a deadline and allowing ourselves to paint a picture of what those days will be like, we give ourselves a mission, with purpose and hope.
When that day comes, it will be the first day of the rest of our lives. While that’s an age-old saying, it has never been truer for each of us. Be well and get busy!