Planning: Meaning and Importance


Definition and Meaning of Planning.

To plan means to create a clear proposal for what you want to do. The word ‘plan’ comes from the French word ‘plan’. Plan in French can mean either a plot of a building (like a floor plan or an architect’s plan) or simply ‘flat’. The two definitions are linked because a ground plot of a building represents a flattened out, 2 dimensional version of a building. In modern English, a ‘plan’ can also refer to a document which contains our ideas and proposals for future projects.

Planning can be conducted in many different ways. Some people hold planning meetings to brainstorm and work on a plan together. Others simply write down a list of things to do – a ‘to do list’ and follow that step by step. Plans can be very detailed indeed, or they can simply be a broad outline of what needs to be done in order to complete a given project.

There are many benefits to making a good plan. Plans are beneficial in so many different contexts, including at school, in the workplace and in our personal lives too. A plan can be something as everyday as a shopping list or something that takes years to perfect for example an architectural plan for a new public building. Below, you will find 10 key reasons why planning is so important. This will give you an overview of the wide scope of planning, and the various ways in which it can be advantageous in our lives.

The importance of planning.

1. Visualizing our aims.

Making a plans enables us to clarify what our aims are. This is absolutely essential if we want to be able to achieve those aims.

2. Achieving our goals.

Having a clear plan of what we need to do makes it so much easier to achieve our goals. Whenever we are unsure about what to do, we simply have to refer to the plan and we can get right back on track.

3. Working with others.

When we are working with others, it is so important that everyone is on the same page. Having a plan that you have all agreed on will enable you all to work together effectively because everyone will be clear on what is being done when, and by whom.

4. Self discipline.

Having a plan that you need to stick to is a fantastic way of staying self disciplined. Pinning a list of study goals to the wall above your desk, for example, is a great way to keep yourself disciplined with your studies.

5. Staying motivated.

Once you have got everything laid down into a plan, that plan will serve as a powerful motivation for you to get everything done. Just take a look at your plan from time to time and you will feel fresh energy and enthusiasm!

6. A legal requirement.

For certain types of projects, it is a legal requirement to submit a plan of what you are going to do to the relevant authorities. For example, if you are applying for a loan to finance your business activities, you will often need to submit an accurate business plan with a budget before you can access your money. There are plenty of people who can offer guidance on drawing up the best plan for your business, including accountants, fellow business-people and legal professionals.

7. A record.

Once your project is completed, your plans will provide excellent records of the project. They will also help to jog your memory if, some years in the future, you want to be able to remember the details of the project, or start a similar project in the future. Often, it is a legal (or at least bureaucratic) requirement that we keep all of our plans stored for a certain amount of time as this keeps everything about our projects transparent to others.

8. Visualizing the future.

It can be hard to think about the impact of our actions in the future. However, when we work on a detailed plan of our actions, it becomes so much easier to visualize how our actions are going to impact on the future. Once we can visualize the future, moreover, we can adjust our plan accordingly to ensure that we get the best outcome.

9. Enjoyable.

The art of making a plan is something enjoyable in its own right! Organizing our ideas and apportioning resources is actually pretty fun. If you love arranging your bedroom and getting everything neat and tidy, then chances are you will also enjoy planning. Planning can fill us with positive feelings, and it is also an achievement in its own right – so if you want to take the plunge with your next project and feel good about it in the process, why not make yourself a plan?

10. Showing determination.

If we have a plan for what we want to do – whether that is a list of guests for our next party or a large two dimensional layout of a house we want to build – that instantly shows other people that we mean business. Showing others our plan demonstrates that we have a clear idea of what we want to do, and that we know how are going to do it. When it comes to pitching our business ideas, for example, having a good plan is absolutely essential if we want potential investors to take us seriously.


An excellent plan will make achieving your goals much easier. So stop thinking of planning as a preliminary to getting a job done: planning is, rather, an essential first step and foundation stone of any job. We can all try and plan our lives a little more carefully. Whether you always arrive at the shops and forget what groceries you needed, or whether you have a big event such as a wedding or a work conference coming up, making a plan will ensure that you can sort everything out with the utmost ease. Planning can be done on paper, online or in your head – just find out what works best for you and then get planning! You will not regret the time that you spent making a plan!

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