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  • Capt. Eric

Mapping the Dream

"So, how do we make this happen?" we both wondered.

"We sell everything, buy a boat and live within our means" I said.

"Show me..." Di said.

So began my first draft at mapping the dream.

How do we get there from here? I am a strong believer that in some aspects of life you need to know where you're going, and have some idea how you're going to get there. Over the years I've been lucky enough to mentor a few young professionals, and one of the exercise I had them do was to define where they wanted to go, and give me an idea how they could get there.

There is nothing wrong if later down the road you decide to change your plan, your objective or larger goals.

But, if you don't plan, you can hardly complain that after wondering around aimlessly you haven't gotten anywhere.

Gantt chart to the rescue!

Over the years, I'd seen my crew working large projects relying on Gantt charts, milestones and deliverables, and it was readily apparent that this project would be the largest in our private life, so needed to be approached with some rigor. I looked around for Gantt chart software solutions and settled on Team Gantt.

Working backwards from "D-Day", the day we'd sail into the sunset on our boat, I figured we would need time to find the right boat, have her surveyed and insured, and obviously would need the cash to buy her. For that, we'd need to sell our real estate. Of course, selling the house we currently lived in would mean moving to our smaller downtown apartment. Slowly, logically, the dominoes were falling in place and a plan was coming to life.

We both worked and reworked each goal, milestone and tasks. We assigned tasks to each other as we thought about the myriad of small details that would have to be in place before "D-Day".

When all was said and done, the chart showed we would need just over 2 years from start to end of project. That came as a shock to both of us, as although we knew there were many moving targets in the long timeline, we hadn't yet realized its full scope yet.An eye opener and a great tool to focus our minds for sure.

In hindsight we can say we followed the plan very closely with the only major deviations being having bought the boat sooner than anticipated and "D-Day" ending up being a few weeks early. Overall, we've come out on time and on budget.

As to what we forgot? Only time will tell!

Sold, so we can pursue other sunsets around the world.

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