A few years ago I wrote a blog post about my five year plan. I was 21 at the time of writing the post and still a little naive.
A month into my final year of university, I didn’t really know what I wanted or where I wanted to end up after my time at university was over, never mind five years from then.
I hear about the ‘five year plan’ a lot, in magazines and on TV.
I often feel like I must have a five year plan in place to know where I’m going in life and therefore, be able to stay on track to achieve it.
But can we really know what we want to be doing for the next five years of our lives? Can’t our wants and needs change, as well as our career paths? Is it feasible to have a five year plan anymore?
Related post: Five Things I Hope to Achieve in the Next Five Years
My Five Year Plan
Reading my previous blog post from 2018, I wrote that I also had a seven year plan, and a ten year plan.
Where and what they are, I have no idea, but looking back I don’t know how feasible a ten year plan was at 21 years of age.
However, looking at my five year plan, it may not have been too bad – it’s all very top line and actually quite achievable.
The five things I wanted to achieve in five years (from 2018) was:
- Graduate with a first class honours degree
- Financial stability
- Create a large network of PR professionals
- Be in a job, a sector, and company that I love
- Live in three or more cities/countries
I wouldn’t say that I have a large network of connections, although this is something I greatly want to work on this year. I’m currently not in a job or sector that I love, but with COVID-19 and working from home, I’m thankful I have a secure job until September.
And I haven’t yet ticked off the three or more cities as I lived in New York and then came back to work remotely from Liverpool. I do hope that I will tick this one off this year, as I am moving in a few months to a new city in the UK for a short while before moving on somewhere else – so this one is definitely doable!
Planning for the future
I’m trying to stop looking at COVID-19/remote working as a stop-gap. At the moment, it feels like my career is on pause and I’m just going through the motions of working every day and getting my monthly pay as it pays the bills.
This doesn’t seem like the time to be taking risks in my career or looking for change. But then, what if this is the perfect time to change things up, to start looking for something fulfilling and more in line with what I want to do in the long-term.
This is a time where I have no commute, more time than ever spent at home and more time than ever to research, to work on myself, to build a virtual network at least and try to get back on track to working in my dream career and finding my dream job.
What I’ve noticed recently is that my values and priorities can change very quickly. What I wanted back in 2018 when I wrote this plan, may not be what I want right now in 2021.
I spent a year working and living in New York, I now have a boyfriend and I am now working remotely in a global pandemic – three things that weren’t something to be considered when I first penned my five year plan.
The goal for me back in 2018 was probably to move to a big city and work my way up the career ladder. Now, I value remote working and being able to work from anywhere – something I want to continue doing.
After spending a year in New York, I desperately want to go back there to live and work again. How I’m going to do that, I have no idea, but I do know that my goal in the next five years is most likely not to end up in London, working my way up a corporate career ladder. For me, I’m much more interested in start-ups and small businesses, where I can make an impact and feel the value that I am adding.
And now my five year plan doesn’t just involve me, so new considerations and changes have to be made.
This time next year
You probably know about my yearly goals posts already, which I write every January and include all of the things I want to achieve in the year ahead.
However, if I think now about what I want my situation to be this time next year, that’s a little different.
Where will I be sat this time next year? What city will I be living in? What job will I be working in? What will I have achieved with my blog? What accomplishments will I have made in those 12 months? How will I have progressed?
My 12 month plan looks something like this:
- Be living in a new city (preferably a new country, but no longer in a city I’ve previously lived in)
- Be working in influencer marketing again in an industry I have a passion for
- Not be in an office five days a week, feeling like a cog in the corporate system
- Be making additional income from my blog and have established a wider brand/portfolio
- Be feeling much more accomplished in my industry than I feel right now
My new five year plan
I like having goals and I like having things to work towards. Life may throw us curveballs like COVID-19 and other things which may veer us off course, but having something that I can constantly work towards, motivates me.
Since I’ve ticked two things off of my previous five year plan, I want to pen a new one with new items to tick off in the next five years (but still including the ones I have yet to tick off my list). By that time I will be 28 (omg) and probably making my way through a 30 Things to do Before I Turn 30 list.
- Live in three new cities/countries
- Be working in a job that I love
- Build a large PR network (starting to work on this ASAP)
- Make progress on the OC blog/brand (2021 is going to be a big start for this)
- Work for myself/have a job on the side (aka side-hustle)
And there we have it, a new five year plan. I can see a lot of moving around happening this year (now I’m starting to sound like a fortune teller) so I may tick the first one off by next year, who knows.
Reading some motivational blogs and books recently, I’m no longer going to settle for a job that I don’t love or have no passion for. No job has ever compared to the passion I had for my job during my placement year, and working in influencer marketing is what I need to go back to.
I’m going to try to do a lot better when it comes to networking – especially as we can do it all online now. Send a few messages on LinkedIn (something I’ve never done) and connect via Twitter (something I find very worthwhile).
Working on my blog is what I enjoy most. Creating content, reading about influencer marketing on the daily, discussing influencers and reading and reviewing books. If I could turn it into a full-time job, I would, but I don’t see that happening in the near future. However, I have five years to work on it and see what I can turn it into – watch this space!