I’m a huge planner! I like to have a specific idea of what I will be doing…when I’ll be doing it…and all the logistics in place from A to Z. This skill has been truly helpful in my life and I don’t really need to explain why. However, being the proverbial planner does have its downsides. I’m rarely spontaneous or unexpected. It’s very difficult for me to do the whole go with the flow thing- but in the last few years I have been trying to work on this. The attempt to be more spontaneous got me thinking about what other problems being a planner could have caused. In some of my posts I mentioned that I’m an instant gratification person. This quality definitely played a role in me being a planner. If I make a logical plan then there’s no reason why the end result shouldn’t occur at the very moment it’s supposed to right? WRONG! All my steadfast planning pals know how frustrating, disappointing, aggravating and upsetting it is when a plan doesn’t work out properly. Maybe the plan had some holes? Maybe it was built on a weak foundation? Maybe it was truly unrealistic but we ignored that factor? However when it doesn’t work out- the point is just that. Then the distraught planner is left to pick up the pieces and figure out how to calmly continue on without ripping a chuck of hair out. What’s the answer? Stop planning altogether? ABSOLUTELY NOT! That action would be too much for a planner to handle. Rather, make your plan, but leave some gaps. Create a few outcome choices. Give more time buffers. Make the plan realistic. If you are surrounded with people who only plan, go find some free spirited humans and hang around them for a while. You’ll find that no matter how hard you try to plan and execute, nothing goes according to plan when one party wants to chase the wind. I’ve been lucky to have some close people in my life who like to plan NOT to plan. This has taught me so much and normalized me a bit more. The whole point is to avoid trapping ourselves in the discouraged/negative zone when the plan doesn’t work. So make your plan and then plan for it not to be followed to a “T.” Your sanity will thank you tenfold.