Plans don’t always work

December 6, 2019

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Planning doesn’t always work out. Obviously, sometimes life throws you curveballs. And sometimes plans don’t work in more subtle ways.

In my lawyer days, I used to workout first thing in the AM. So after my daughter started sleeping through the night, I recovered from months of sleep deprivation, and I got my early mornings back, I scheduled working out for that first-thing-in-the-AM slot. After all, that’s what had worked for me for years.

But, while I had no problem getting up at 5am, I found myself consistently ignoring that “Quick Workout” calendar alert. Me! The person who harps on and on about your calendar.

Instead, I wanted to work — to research issues for clients, to work on my online course I’m releasing next year, etc.

When you find yourself consistently ignoring a planned activity, it’s not a sign planning doesn’t work or that something is wrong with you. It’s just a little nudge that the activity is either not scheduled at the right time or may not be the right activity for you in the first place.

Back to my riveting story: me snoozing my workout alerts until noon-ish meant that was the right time for working out. That’s all. I still get the same things done (work + working out) — but now when they fit my mood and energy.

If you find yourself consistently ignoring your plans, tweak them. Don’t keep banging your head against a plan that doesn’t work for you or throw planning out altogether. Try to find a time that works for you.

And, if that doesn’t work, consider trying a new activity. If workout videos aren’t interesting enough, try a class. If you’ve tried to journal or meditate for months and keep ignoring your plans, they may not be the right activities for you — try going on a walk or drawing instead. (We often ignore the things we think we “should” do that aren’t bringing us all that much joy.)

We change. Our needs, energy and time constraints change. Be flexible and intentional — and find a rhythm that works for you right now.

If you want help finding that rhythm, check out how I can help here!

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