In my early twenties, disgusted by my lack of progress in life, I disassembled and threw away my bed. I wouldn’t allow myself a bed to sleep in until I made something of myself.
Maybe a little over the top?
Yeah. I agree.
I decided I would build myself a loft bed. And so, I got pen and paper and drew up the plans. Measured the room, measured the wood, and cut.
Now, I don’t have a “handyman gene” in my body. I can’t build stuff. But my bed turned out pretty darn good. There was enough room underneath for my desk and dresser. It was cool.
The learning piece, however, was that something happens when you put pen to paper and plan! The power of thinking before you take action is often key to success.
Planning with good old-fashioned pen and paper has many benefits. The following are 5 perks of personal planning on writing.
1. Planning Sorts It All Out
What is it you’re trying to do?
The simple act of writing down our goals has great impact. In the act of writing, you identify what is important to you. Implied here, is that you are also noting what is not important to you by not writing it. You’re filtering what is and isn’t important1.
By handwriting your goal as part of a plan, you are deciding on a direction. If you decided to go west, you cannot also go east, for example. You are narrowing your focus.
Emily Balcetis, psychologist from NYU, believes that simply rearranging the way that we see things visually, changes the way we perceive them. And further, by narrowing our focus, we can achieve more3.
2. Planning Reduces Anxiety, Stress and Fear
Writing a simple to-do list can reduce anxiety and give structure to what needs accomplished4.
3. People Who Paper Plan Achieve More
4. Planning Provides a Competitive Advantage