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The Fault With Planning

06 / 04 / 2016

In my last year of school I was a chronic planner. And I do mean CHRONIC. At least one to-do list a day and boy did I have to cross off everything on that list. To my credit I did take it one day at a time, although I do recall the occasional 'weekly' list popping up in there too so I wasn't entirely pacing myself. Yet the point was that I absolutely had to live by this lists I made. Little room was made to be free and wriggle, resulting in the whole of 2015 being very NOT spontaneous. If I'm honest I didn't go to some social engagements because (for example) my Saturday had always looked a certain way (aka - waking early, study until lunch, go to the market with mum, resume study until dinner, cook dinner, plan for Sunday after dinner), and I was afraid to change that. I didn't have room to move, or at least I didn't let others do the moving for me, or vary rarely. I suppose I sound like a tad of a control freak - but I was committed to doing the best I could. Sometimes it didn't feel like it, because I would think and say that I was over it, couldn't care less - but through all of that I kept it up. Sort of like a subconscious drive to keep it up. I don't know what kept me going in all honestly, but I think I might have to say the answer was fear. Yikes :\

But we are talking about planning are we not? Yes.

I am totally for planning in your work domain. If you are self employed/agended, then totally - plan away. However when you start planning what you do in your spare time, all the time, then you are in trouble. I would put things on my list to do such as take a shower, make some cards, write to a friend, make dinner, and in a sense there is nothing wrong with this, but when that is your reality all the time then you are going to drive yourself insane. You'll end up like me I guess. Learning how to navigate one's time again, and (here's the catch) not feeling guilty about it. Go ahead with your agenda and not feel pressured to do things a certain way, at a specific time or with a set group of people.

Recently I heard some advice regarding following your bliss - or something along those lines. That being, to regularly check in with yourself and ask 'what do you feel like doing now?'....'and now?'. I have found it tremendously helpful. Not only does it place you in the present but it results in a higher chance of happiness as you are following your immediate schedule, rather then what you promised yourself you would do 12 hours before. What sounds more fun? Yep you got it.

Obviously the reality lies that there are somethings that just have to be done that we wish could be sent to the aliens to do (and do well hehe). Yet even when we wish that something would just go away, with this method of re-evaluation we can put a new light on previously dull and dreary tasks. Previously unknown avenues can open up and we see a new path unfold before us. So you never know.

Keep your planning for the necessary, but don't let it get out of control. The universe has plans for you whether you like it or not, and as odd/dull/depressing/ridiculous as it sounds, it's not as if you would schedule when you are going to drop dead, nor when you meet the partner of your dreams. Things just happen, so ride the wave and let them.