How Long Is Your Long-Term?

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Dangote is building a refinery. Most of us only focus on the money involved and potential gain. Today, I want you to focus on the time period. Dangote doesn't expect to make back his investment in less than eight years.

How long is your own long-term? Do you only stuff it with non-financially involving goals or do you bet big on it? 

I am slowly transitioning from projecting my short-term plans into my long-term plans. Plans that require me to just make minor changes today and reap a compounded reward in the long-term. How about plans that don't make sense in the short-term and medium-term, but only make sense in the long-term? Something more like Dangote's refinery: it will cost a lot now and a lot for the next couple of years without any commensurate payback till the eighth or more years of operation.

It is very difficult to ignore easy gain and slow/shut down what is making money now to put in energy and resources into what won't make you back money in the short-term. And there's always soft pressure from friends, family and competition to prevent you from thinking out-of-the-box and long-term. Everyone and everything points more to you maximizing what you currently have going right for you instead of staking too much on two birds in a very distant forest. The result is that we end up not having a genuinely long long-term plans but extension of our short-term plans.

I am lucky to have identified the problem as it makes it half solved. Next is to start having genuinely long long-term plans. Plans that won't make sense in the short-term or medium-term, but only in the long-term. They won't replace my short-term plans, rather they will be in addition to my other short-term plans. So I call it balancing my plans -- having a balanced mix of short-term plans and long-term plans.

How about you? Facing a similar challenge?

1 comment:

  1. Thought provoking article, long term plan leads to amazing outcome, if carefully executed. It takes more than commitment and discipline.


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