: controlling a situation by making things happen or by preparing for possible future problems
I’ve spent a lot of my life not being proactive but reactive. It’s an easy rut to fall into if you haven’t set any goals for yourself, and I hadn’t. I didn’t really know what I wanted in life or out of life. I’ve said it before: I was a leaf in the wind. I was at the mercy of whatever came my way, positive or negative, with no game plan on how to deal with it. Sure, positive is easy to deal with, in theory, but I have learned that if you don’t know what to do with the positives, how to maintain them, then you have left the door open to lose that positive one way or another.
I know how negative that may sound, but, since I have come to believe that we truly are the creators of our world by the actions that we take, we MUST take a role in how we maintain our positives and overcome our negatives by being proactive. This does not mean that life doesn’t still happen. There will always be challenges that arise, possibly unforeseen, that need to have a plan applied to them to move past them into the positive.
Sometimes, I feel as if I have by-passed proactive and moved right into the attempt to control every last thing that happens or could happen. I am constantly trying to pre-plan for every potential outcome. I’ll admit I can be somewhat overbearing with my ‘plans.’ I’m less than patient when things don’t go according to my plan, but I am working on that and have to say I have gotten much better about it than I used to be.
So, how does one become proactive? Well, for me, it looks a lot like a bunch of time researching, but that’s just how I function. I like having all the info so I can make the best choices or plan of action to achieve the desired goal. I believe being proactive means creating a goal, developing a plan to achieve that goal, then doing whatever it takes to attain that goal. It means not backing down from the goal because a glitch in the plan comes up, obstacles present themselves, and/or roadblocks develop. It means arming yourself with the skills and/or knowledge needed to attain the goal, applying it to the plan, being prepared to face and handle any challenges on the path, believing in yourself to keep going, and not accepting ‘close enough’ as an end result of your efforts. If you’re not willing to fight for your dreams/goals, then you have resigned yourself to accepting whatever comes your way as just your lot in life, good or bad. Personally, I am liking this life of proactiveness. When I’ve reached a goal, no matter how large or small, that feeling of accomplishment is amazing. The best part? Knowing I made it happen.