How many of you have a 5-year plan?
Maybe you’ve outlined where you want to live, what job you want to have, maybe even what your cute significant other is going to look like. I know I have. When I graduated college, I had the perfect 5-year plan. Be an investment banker and New Yorker for 2 years, then move somewhere south, find a handsome husband and pop out a kid by 27. I presumed I would rise through the ranks of a corporation, you know, living that Corporate Girl life.
Did any of that happen?
Nope. Zilch. Zero.
Nothing in my 5-year plan went, well, according to plan. In fact, before my first year was up, I had switched jobs and was destined to be in New York at LEAST a year longer than expected. Here we are five years later and I have not moved, I haven’t found a handsome hubs, definitely don’t have a kid (what was I thinking?!) and bucked the corporate train to work for a growing startup. Yeah, my 5-year plan was an absolute bust.
But you know what? It was the best thing that ever happened to me.
If my 5-year plan went off without a hitch, I would’ve missed out on SO MUCH FUN. So many people. So many experiences. So many life lessons.
I would’ve missed out on some of the best friends a girl could ask for. I would’ve missed out on heartbreak that taught me a lot of lessons about healthy (and unhealthy) relationships. I would’ve missed the community that largely shaped and encouraged me in becoming a Christian. I would’ve missed starting my business and rubbing shoulders with some pretty successful peeps. I would’ve missed out on random Thursday-night Broadway shows, the runs along the Hudson on a warm summer day, wine nights cozy in my apartment with my girls. Let me tell you, all of those things were MUCH better than my simple 5-year plan.
See, your 5-year plan will fail too. Sorry to break it to you. But it will happen. Because life happens. (They don’t tell you that in high school and college.) Industries change. People come and go. What seemed 100% sure just isn’t. Dreams fade, new ones emerge and you have to sometimes just roll with the punches.