By Mitch Hills
‘What am I going to do for the rest of my life?’ Ever asked yourself this question? It’s a tricky one to answer, but with this simple change of mindset you can figure it out quickly.
This is a question you may have gotten asked this in school when someone said ‘What do you want to do when you’re older?’. And even then with your imagination running wild, even then it’s sometimes hard to come up with an answer. It is a tough question… how do you pick a career, or a path to go down, that requires starting now, but then years later you may end up regretting it or wanting to change and then it’s too late? There’s a stack of other reasons why it’s difficult to answer, so nobody’s blaming you for not having it figured it out. But!
I’ve noticed a way around it. Don’t think about what you want to do. Think what do you want. Notice the difference between do and want. What are the main things you would love to have in life? If you had all the time and resources available, what would you would do? Common answers are financial freedom, travel the world, retire your family, start your own businesses, charities. Everybody knows the kinds of things they want.
Let’s use financial freedom as an example, and let’s say you want to have 10 million dollars. Now you can work backwards and figure out how you can actually make that happen. To get to 10 million I have to get to X. To get to X I have to get to Y. To get to Y I have to get to Z (XYZ being smaller goals and milestones). You can then keep working backwards and reverse engineer your dream, working all the way back to today where you can begin moving towards it now.
So instead of just being a crazy goal that’s out of your reach, you’ve broken it down into smaller, achievable steps that can make it a reality. Now it doesn’t have to be this one career that you choose as you just cross your fingers and hope for the best, now you know what you want and you know how to get there. Obviously this requires a lot of work and it’s not as easy as just writing down goals and waiting for it to happen like a magic trick, but at least you have a strategy that doesn’t require locking down a job title for 40 years, drifting through limbo.
If you’re not sure, it’s worth taking the time to figure it out. Write down those key things you want and work backwards until you reach today. Don’t wait for the ‘right moment’ because we all know it’s either not coming, or when it does come it’s too late and you’ll wish you started today. Good luck!
Mitch is a young Australian entrepreneur with an unusual amount of motivation and a burning passion for business. He is the founder of the AroundAbout app and The Exceptions Network, which offers services and a community for young entrepreneurs interested in starting or growing a business. Mitch posts new articles and videos every week, keep up with him on Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat at mitchills.