I am the planner in our family, but my husband is the man who wants a plan. He loves the quote, “A failure to plan is a plan for failure.” Which is ironic because he fails epically at planning anything. It’s a real possibility that our house would have burned down during the renovation if I hadn’t had a plan…. And we didn’t even have a need to use fire for anything. So, you could say we are well matched in that department. I like to plan, he likes to have a plan.
But there are times in our lives when plans aren’t useful. Not many mind you, but there are some. When you want to follow your passions, having a backup plan is not a great idea. I know that many of you are grumbling about this. You are saying, “But what if my plan fails?” And you have just pinpointed the problem.
I don’t care if you dream of opening a restaurant, a knitting shop, being a photographer or a writer. It really doesn’t matter what your dreams are. What matters is how you look at them. If you are looking at your dream and you just know it’s what you are meant to do, failure is not in your thought process. I’m not saying to not have a plan. If you are opening a restaurant you will need a very good plan full of market research, location scouting, budgets and a menu ideas. But if you are doing all of those things and saying, “And if my restaurant fails, then I will be an accountant.” You have already set yourself up to fail.
It’s not to say you aren’t a fabulous cook or a wise business minded person. But when you say you are following your passion, having a backup plan tells the world that you don’t think you can do it. If you need to work 2 jobs to support your photography business at first, do it. But if you quit those jobs to do it full time and you have a backup plan of what you are going to do with your life if your photography fails, then you aren’t that sure you will succeed.
The key to following your dreams is knowing that you won’t fail. If you love it and have true passion for it, it will show. People will follow you because they can feel it and see it in every dish you make, every picture you take, every sweater your knit and every sentence you type. Passion leads to success. Not monetary, but life. You will be happy and fulfilled and successful at life… And hopefully boat loads of money will follow that.
So don’t have a backup plan. If you are going to say that there is only one thing you want to do with your life, then do it. Follow that path and see where it takes you. Backup plans are for people who think they will fail. You need to know that you won’t. You need to be all in. You can’t have one foot out the backdoor and expect your dreams to succeed. Go all in and know that backup plans are for sissies.