People often ask me, amid the hustle and bustle of our busy lives, at meetings and conferences, or even standing in the schoolyard: “What is your 2/5/10 year plan?” “What are your goals and objectives?” “Where do you see yourself/the business/this project going?” And usually I respond, “I don’t know. We’ll just have to wait and see.” And I know this is not what they were expecting to hear, at all.
I did have periods of doubt but, to be honest, I think this approach has contributed to UrbanMoms’ success. If I had a rigid business plan 6+ years ago when I started I am 100% sure I would have failed, miserably. Social media and technology are evolving and changing so fast that to plan something even 6 months ahead can be a fatal mistake. Plus, it’s much more fun to be flexible and creative when responding to a client.”Of course we can do that!” is a lot easier when you are not trying to fit a square peg into a round hole.
Ever since I started this business I have resisted the traditional planning process. I know what UrbanMoms stands for and I let the values drive its evolution. So far, so good.
And now I have decided to apply this philosophy to my personal life. Slowly but surely I am making a shift and letting go of self-imposed expectations. And I am trying to just let my values guide my life. Ahhhhh. I am convinced this is the key to a fulfilling and happy existence. And I see certain people around me doing it and thriving both professionally and personally.
That was cool!
I met a woman the other day, Alison Garwood Jones, a freelance writer, and we were talking about the evolution of social media and the state of journalism. We pondered the future of traditional print publications and the shift from traditional journalism to social media. We discussed its impact on the journalist, the media, the medium and the story itself.
As we chatted I said to her, “And what about you? What are your plans?” and she said, “You know, I just want to live a cool life.” I couldn’t help myself, I nearly stood up and cheered! “Exactly!” I pounced. “That is EXACTLY how I feel.”
And it is. I don’t really have a plan of any kind but when cool things come my way, even if they seem odd or inconvenient, I make it work. And as I experience new things and I change and grow, my idea of cool changes too. And now I have an answer when someone asks me, “What is your 2/5/10 year plan?” Now I can answer:
“I just want to live a cool life.”
What about you? What drives you? How would you answer that question?