’ve been in leadership for a while. You’ve been through many strategic planning sessions. You’ve done many a SWOT analysis, vision casting and you get it.


When you pull into your garage, take your heels off and collapse into a chair; for 5 min before you start working at home; the thought of applying strategic planning to your life is well exhausting…

And yet…

You have all of these dreams and goals on the shelf of your mind. You get frustrated that you are not any closer achieving them. Somehow you seem to have forgotten how to drive a project to completion in your personal life; you forget how much your dreams really matter to you and in your exhaustion you save these thoughts for another day.

Why do we do this? I have found that it’s often because when we compartmentalize life and separate work from home we also separate all of the things we’ve learned in our career – like strategic planning.

All you really need is a refresher of the process of setting goals and writing plans; the next step is to do the work and it’s that implementation which takes the dream and makes it a reality because it forces you to move…

If a goal is the place you want to end up then strategy is your mode of transportation.

So before you run, race, drive, row, walk or skate your way to your dreams here are 4 truths to help you bring the skill set of strategic planning to your life.

1. Visualize Moving Towards Your Goal:  If your goal is to complete a painting, gain your first personal training client etc. what does this look like? Will you need to make time to paint? Will you need to ask a friend to be your genie pig to train? Take a step and visualize the next step.

2. Do What works for YOU: For me strategies have to be enjoyable.  For example, I work out but it’s not my favorite thing to do. So I do what I enjoy which is circuit training. What is fun for you? What are your requirements? As you do your homework in #3 think about what works for you – don’t force yourself to do something you hate. You want to enjoy your dream journey not turn it into extra “work”.

3. Do YOUR Homework: Research, research, research! Take classes in your dream area; follow the leaders to see what they’re doing; create a focus group with a few friends to pick their brains.

4. Stay Centered: Always go back to your dream to reality plan. Remind yourself  who your dream is focused around. What do they need?

What will you apply to your life today so you can take those dream off the shelf?  This week?  This month? 

Copyright 2014, Mary R Miller