My Five-Year Plan and How to Build Yours


Quote the Raven: Sarah
Applied Linguistics and Discourse Studies, minor in Disability Studies


I recently saw one of my favourite YouTubers do a video on creating a Five Year Plan and it really inspired me to think about what my mid-term goals are and what I can be doing now to work towards achieving them. A Five Year Plan can be a great way of assessing what your goals are and breaking them down into manageable steps. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that everything we do today either brings us closer to or farther from our goals. I think looking at her process and making it my own (and your own) can be a really great way to figure out what you could be doing this summer to achieve the life you want.

We can do this by asking ourselves three questions:

  1.  What do I want my life to look like in five years? (This doesn’t have to be big scale, can be your ideal day to day life)
  2. What will it take to get there?
  3. How can I take those steps and turn them into manageable tasks for me to do this summer?

Let me demonstrate. You can easily do this in point-form or paragraphs.

Step One: What do I want my life to look like in five years?

  1. Finished my undergraduate degree and either have completed or be working towards getting my Masters
  2. Comfortable in my finances
  3. Close circle of friends I see regularly
  4. Have at least one polished manuscript (ideally I would like to be published, but that’s out of my control: stick to things that you actually have control over)

I could add more, but you get the picture.

Step Two: What will it take to get there?

  1. Do well in school so I can graduate and get into graduate school
  2. Work to gain experience and build my resume, and save what I can
  3. Work on maintaining my relationships
  4. Write, stick with the projects I’ve started and work on them until they’re as polished as I can make them

Step Three: What can I do this summer for each of those tasks?

  1. Consider summer school, or focus on mapping out my next year of study, and build academic skills
  2. Work hard at my current jobs and maintain positive work relationships, look for new opportunities, work on personal development
  3. Make spending time with friends a priority, consider setting regular meetings such as Sunday brunches or a weekly game night, and keep in touch with out-of-town friends
  4. Continue working on my current writing projects

Now that you’ve seen an example of how I did this quick exercise, you can take five minutes of your day to answer these three questions for yourself! You can definitely add more detail to steps two and three, really break down what you need to do, but this is a great first step to planning you summer. From here you can create a more detailed plan and schedule your summer around your main goals. You might be surprised at the fun summer plans you can make in the name of personal growth!

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