“Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”

I am always running. Running to submit that HBS application at the eleventh hour. Racing to Aldrich for class. Sprinting to deliver my résumé to recruiters. Running along the Charles (for fun!).

Early in the first year, before TOM turned into LEAD, I learned about life's corporate analogues: just in time and chase strategies. Both sound smarter than "procrastination."

I am ironically an incorrigible planner. Post-it notes decorate my walls, my desk, my computer and at times even me. Those multi-colored little squares contain the germinating ruminations of a meticulously charted life. Step back and you'll see a life's map leading to a career as an MD. My parents would be proud!

Why business school? Well, life's map has today directed me to a land where MDs are managing directors rather than medical doctors. Tomorrow may be different. I am in the company of hundreds of case protagonists when I say my life rarely goes according to plan. Even when it seemingly does.

Although unpredictability frustrates my proclivity to plan, I will strive to embrace it. I will keep my sticky notes and continue scratching out plans on pieces of scrap paper, but I will also be glad, grateful even, that I can fleet-footedly pursue new and yes, even last minute opportunities. They shape a life's journey and ever-changing destination.

— Kelly Cheng