Lately, I have been thinking about this a lot. Not too long ago, a few people in Savannah gave me a hard time for not having a clear path and a precise plan for what lies ahead. They told me that I was without a goal and that my efforts would not lead me anywhere. I usually responded that I believe that I am following my passion and plan for the shorter term, and then see what opportunities I arrive to, trying to be ready for comes my way.
Past week I had the opportunity to talk to some experienced colleagues, and then took the same conversation to some other friends at different points in their lives. The consensus was that none of them said it was important to have a plan, and the majority actually advised to not plan to far ahead. Their argument was that it would get you to narrow-minded. While intention drives focus, it also bares the risk of losing other opportunities out of sight. I was intrigued, because I never thought about it this way.
Finally, I had a great conversation with a friend who told me, that he saw it most important to have a passion for something, and work along the lines of that passion. It might not be a specific plan, but it takes you in a direction where you work on things that you enjoy and love — a lesson that Steve Jobs mentioned as well. I revisited my past article about finding your place and kept thinking to myself that it was a very helpful experience to work with people who are extremely passionate about their work, and saw my passion and could give me advice on what opportunities I want to look out for.
Ultimately, I learned that it is not a problem to not have a plan. With everything being in a constant state of flux there are so many unknown variables that planning to far ahead is similar to planning on winning the lottery: an illusion. The most important thing is to be passionate about something and following that passion. This is what people should really focus on, especially because finding your passion might not always be as obvious as you think it is.