The Five Year Plan

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Often, as youngsters, we think we’ll have everything figured out at some point. For some, these hopes, dreams and actions work out. Others, well, others aren’t always as lucky. For some reason, society has decided, through job interviews, inquisitive peers, and many other platforms, that there needs to be a five-year plan.

At some point, you will be asked what your five-year plan is, and at some point after that, you will be asked again, then again, and it won’t stop. And, with life being the random strange thing that it is, some people will have a plan that they can make work to some extent. Others might have a plan but will fail miserably. As with many other ideas, most people are probably somewhere in the middle.

You might not want to admit your plan (Good idea actually.) You might be one of those people who is scared of your own ambition. Alternatively, you might know exactly what you want to do but have no idea how to create a plan.

Funnily, that one person whose plans always happen to work often has the least risk averse plan. Ain’t it always strange how that works out? Additionally, there are so many careers where five years is not enough to judge. (Acting comes to mind.) So what the hell is up with five years, and why do so many people enjoy using that timeframe?

Some people will say that five years is a good frame to see some progress. Others will say that the “Where do you see yourself in five years?” question is just a personality test type of question. Personally, my guess is that some self-help guru penned it as some brilliant, end-all-be-all of questions that can give you insight into someone’s personality. Most likely, this self-help guru probably only gave vague explanations behind what each common answer means.

Business seems to follow a trend of, “Well that guy’s doing it, so we might as well too.” hence the existence of internships which directly oppose some fundamentals of capitalism. In this often, monkey-see, monkey-do world, perhaps it’s okay to be stuck wherever you are with your five-year plan as long as you are truthfully being productive. Who knows. Perhaps if you keep doing whatever it is you’re doing, you might be successful.

After all, the whole idea of success is subjective, and so is every reason for a five-year plan. Let’s just hope that you’re as lucky as you need to be.

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