Let’s say you’ve got your attitude correct, the right skill set honed, and the right philosophy. Great! You’re on your way – somewhere. If you don’t have the right direction planned out, you’ll simply wander aimlessly.

You don’t attempt even the smallest of construction jobs without a plan, and yet many people work in a field they just happened to “fall in to” because someone suggested it, or a friend was doing it, or even worse—they didn’t have anything else to do.

Wandering through your career can be just as deadly as wandering through a desert without a compass and canteen—in both places, you can die a slow death of thirst and exhaustion.

You must know where you want to go in order to set a direction for your life and career. You’ve probably heard the adage, “No one plans to fail, but they do fail to plan.” So determine where it is that you want to go (i.e., what you want to do) and set a course for it.

I recommend doing something you love. Not something that you can tolerate or achieve a reasonable pension from after 30 years of work (do pensions even exist anymore?), but something you are truly passionate about.

If it’s music, think about how you are gifted in that area. Do you sing? Would your singing chip paint off a house? Do you have an ear for pitch and tune? Do you play an instrument? Consider the field of professional golf for a moment. Do you love to golf? Would you be willing to commit days, weeks, months, and years to bettering your game to the point when you could hit the pro-circuit?

Do you have a means to support yourself (and your family) while you work on your dream job? Would you be happy and content doing whatever you chose—for the rest of your days, if need be? These are all questions you should ask yourself as you try to set the direction for your life, and ultimately, for your success.

Now that you know where you want to go, you must plan and prepare for your destination. As you plan and prepare, it’s fair to expect that you will achieve that goal—expectations play a large role in success, no matter what the field. If you plan well and are committed to the work involved, then and only then, can you expect to achieve the desired results in your life.

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