The unpredictable and ever changing nature of life requires that we be prepared for anything and everything life throws our way, and for us to have plans in place that help safeguard our well-being. Plans give us direction, offer us stability and ensure that we don’t get caught off guard or derailed when things don’t pan out as anticipated. Contingency plans, emergency plans, retirement plans, savings plans, insurance plans and some backup plans serve this very purpose.
A backup plan is a person, plan, device, etc. that is kept in reserve to serve as a substitute, if needed. Backup plans are often our last resort and what we fall back on when our main plan doesn’t work or falls through. The problem with back up plans is that they often aren’t our best option since they aren’t our first or most favorable choice, but rather something we force ourselves to make do with in the meantime or when all else fails.
When it comes to the pursuit of our goals and dreams, our backup plans sometimes work against us because they derail us and at times end up becoming our main plan if we aren’t careful. Because backup plans offer us security and a safety net, they often set us up for failure because they take and use up the time, energy and resources that could have been directed to our main plan thus causing us to neglect the latter.
As long as we know we have something to fall back on, we often don’t pursue our goals and dreams with the zeal and sense of urgency that they require and often push them to the back burner as things to attend to or re-visit someday when we are ready or better equipped. Our backup plans keep us stuck and stunt our progress in life because they don’t inspire, motivate or challenge us to push ourselves but rather, serve as crutches that allow us to survive as opposed to thrive.
We shouldn’t rely on our backup plans to provide us with security but should instead use them as a catalyst that helps propel us to where we want to go. Our backup plans shouldn’t provide us with enough satisfaction that we allow ourselves to become complacent and content with our lives as they are but should instead challenge us to push past the barriers and limiting beliefs that keep us from reaching our full potential.
The danger of backup plans is that they allow us to have an “option for failure”, if you will that isn’t favorable when it comes to our pursuits thereby preventing us from sometimes giving them our all. Focusing on one thing and giving it the attention, commitment and focus it deserves often results in its success thereby not requiring us to have a backup plan.
Make a commitment today to make your goal or dream your main plan and give it everything you’ve got. Don’t get sidetracked by your backup plan or allow yourself to consider it as an option. Keep pushing until you succeed and only allow yourself to consider other options after you have exhausted your main plan, gone back to the drawing table several times, tried different approaches and have made peace with the fact that it might not be your best option.