8. How to turn your desire into action?
“The future depends on what we do in the present” Gandhiji said. Planning helps us to chart a course for the achievement of goals. The process begins with reviewing the current situation and identifying what needs to be improved operationally in the next week or month or year, as the case may be. Through planning one can achieve optimum use of time, money, manpower and other resources. In planning execution is the key for success.
The plans designed by Gandhiji during Quit India movement are given as an example here.
- The duties and activities in government offices should come to a halt.
- People should not pay taxes. If government issues orders to seize properties, people should protest such orders.
- Government employees should not enforce government orders and they should even resign from their positions.
- Students should boycott schools and colleges and should not join them again until independence is achieved.
- Those who believe in violence and hate other religions should stay away from the movement.
Gandhiji designed many more such plans to lead people in freedom struggle. In the same manner, we should design appropriate plans to achieve desires or solve problems, and implement them.
To succeed, you must have plans that are faultless. You must have the advantage of the experience, education, ability and imagination of other minds.
No individual has sufficient knowledge and power to achieve what he wants, without the cooperation of other people. Every plan you adopt, in your endeavour to achieve, should be the joint venture of yourself and every other member of your team. You may originate your own plans, either in whole or in part, but make sure that those plans are reviewed, and approved by the Cosmic Mind team.
We design plans based on the information we know. But life doesn’t always go according to our plan. Life is so complex and vast that no one can ever plan to that extent. If you don’t have a plan at all, you may not know what to do tomorrow. So keep a plan as insurance, but be prepared for all possibilities. Always dream that everything will work out beyond your plans and imagination.
If the first plan which you adopt does not work successfully, replace it with a new plan. If this new plan also fails, replace it with another, and so on, until you find a plan that works. Right here is the point at which the majority of men meet with failure, because of their lack of commitment in creating new plans to take the place of those which fail.
Temporary defeat should mean only one thing, that there is something wrong with your plan. Millions of men go through life in misery, because they lack a sound plan through which one can achieve what he wants.
No man has ever failed, until he quits–in his own mind.
We see men who have achieved great successes, but we often recognize only their triumph, overlooking the temporary setbacks which they had to surmount before succeeding.
When a setback occurs, accept it as a signal that your plans are not sound, rebuild those plans, and set sail once again towards your goal. If you give up before reaching your goal, you are a quitter. A quitter never wins and a winner never quits.
Decision making is an important factor in choosing plans and executing them. It is a process of selecting the best course of action from many alternatives. While considering the alternatives, the following issues should be taken into account.
- Consequences of doing or not doing a thing
- Long term effect: an act may be beneficial in the short term but detrimental in the long term
- Listening to the heart
Gandhiji’s non-violent struggle was going peacefully throughout the nation but it turned violent in a town called Chouri Choura. Angry mob burnt a police station and caused death of police constables. Immediately Gandhiji called off the movement citing that Indians are not yet ready for non-violent struggles. He was firm in his decision in the face of strong opposition from followers.
He believed that even if such a movement triumphs temporarily, it may bring long term evil consequences. He also believed that one man with conviction is majority. Hence it is very important to adhere to a decision after it has been made.
Procrastination is a weakness which everybody must conquer. Analysis of men and women who experience failure, discloses the fact that ‘inability to take decision’ stands near the head of the list of the major causes of failure.
Analysis of successful people, discloses the fact that every one of them has the habit of TAKING DECISIONS PROMPTLY and of changing these decisions SLOWLY, if and when necessary.
People who fail have the opposite habit of TAKING DECISIONS SLOWLY and of changing these decisions QUICKLY and OFTEN.
The majority of people who fail are generally easily influenced by the opinions of others. They permit the newspapers and the gossiping neighbours to do their “thinking” for them. Opinions are the cheapest and abundant commodities on earth. Everyone has a basketful of opinions ready to be distributed to anyone, because they don’t use them anyway. If we are influenced by “opinions” before taking decisions, we may not succeed in any field of action.
It is a characteristic of people who have just shallow knowledge to try to give the impression that they have much knowledge. Such people generally do too much talking and too little listening. Keep your eyes and ears wide open–and your mouth closed, if you wish to acquire the habit of prompt decision. If you talk more than you listen, you not only deprive yourself of many opportunities to accumulate useful knowledge, but you will also permit people to influence you.
Close friends and relatives, while not meaning to do so, often handicap one through “opinions” and sometimes through ridicule, which is meant to be humorous. Thousands of men and women carry inferiority complexes with them all through life, because some well-meaning, but ignorant person destroyed their confidence through “opinions” or ridicule.
No two people are alike. What seems possible to you may seem impossible to another person. Only Wright brothers believed that human beings can fly by using aircraft, while the “knowledgeable people” ridiculed them.
Keep your own counsel or team, when you begin to put into practice the principles in Guide. Take no one into your confidence, except the members of your team. Be very particular in your selection of this team, that you choose only those who are positive and will be in harmony with your ambitions and ideals.
Reach your own decisions, based on the information given by your counsel. If you need facts or information from other people, to enable you to reach decisions; acquire these facts or secure the information you need quietly, without disclosing your purpose.
The value of decisions depends upon the courage required to execute them. The great decisions, which served as the foundation of civilization, were reached by assuming great risks, which often meant the possibility of death.
The men who reach decisions quickly and firmly, know what they want, and generally get it. The world usually makes room for the man whose words and actions show that he knows where he is going.
Fear of failure and indecision is a habit that usually begins in young age. The habit takes on permanency as the youth ages, without definite purpose. Hence it is very important to defeat this habit, at the earliest. Planning is the crystallization of desire into action. In your pursuit of goals, do not look for a “break”, because you will not find it. You will find only the eternal laws, to be complied with. They may be used for great causes such as bringing freedom to a nation, or just to make a better living. There is no price except the time and effort necessary to understand and apply them.