So often in life there comes a time in which consistency that we depend on seems to dissapear overnight. When this happens we are often left feeling helpless, stuck, or just plain confused. Speaking from experience here are just a few things that I do.

1. Determine where you are and what you have.

Before making any rash decisions calm down and reality check what is going on. Where are you physically? What resources do you have? Where were you originally planning on ending up?

2. Make a plan.

Is there another way to get to where you were originally planning on ending up? Try to reverse engineer how to get to where you are going. For instance, I know that I want to be a professional songwriter. In order to get there, I need to learn the craft. How do I do that, I go to college.

3. Set parameters for your plan.

What are all of the details you need to consider outside of the general steps for getting to where you want to go? In my case, that means choosing a college. Okay, how do I pick a college? Well, I know that I wanted to be in a city with a music industry (so Nashville or LA). I also know that I wanted to not have to fly home even if it means driving a number of hours (for me that means staying closer to the east coast of the US). I know that I want to go to a school that that is known to have a good program in my specific major (that narrows my options down to Berklee, Belmont, Middle Tenessee State). Finally, I know that I want my education to be as affordable as possible. That is why I will be attending Middle Tenessee State Univerisity in the fall.

4. Think a little beyond your plan if possible.

Okay, so once I begin attending Middle Tennessee State University what do I want to get out of my education? Personally, I want to make contacts, begin to get involved in the music industry, and I want to have the certifications I need to get a job. This means that I will be taking classes that I both want and need. It also means that I will add a minor to my major and that I will be doing at least one internship during my time at Middle Tenessee State Univerisity.

5. Remember that not everything is supposed to go according to plan.

There is no sense in developing an unrealistic expectation. Be prepared to make changes to your plan. Your plan could simply be a way to process where you want to go or where you think you would like to end up. Change is uncomfortable but it can also serve as a lesson. I like to think of the term plan as being synonymous the term guideline. So really you’re just picking a direction to go in and making a rough outline of how to get there.

If nothing else know that if this process fails there are still plenty of other ways to get to where you are going. At the end of the day there is nothing wrong with having a little faith that everything will work out for the best in the end.