Photo courtesy of producers of Sex& The City
I was sitting there exhausted. I hadn’t completely adjusted to the time changes from west coast to east coast. While I planned a couple days of down time to readjust….that totally didn’t go as planned. I ended up volunteering to babysit my super fun 18 month old east coast nephew, stay at my mom’s and catch up, and then there was an impromptu family barbecue and birthday celebration for my youngest brother. I did all of that knowing I had to get up around 5:30am to be in the office by 7am to work one of three consecutive ten and a half hour days. What was I thinking?!
I planned to rest, and well, that did not happen. But plans gone awry happened long before my US Airways flight touched down at Philadelphia International Airport and I embarked on a whirlwind forty eight hours. It happened the entire week prior. Everything from finding out someone I’d been getting to know had been lying , to getting lost for two hours only to be within 15 minutes of my destination, to someone washing their laundry on top of my laundry (don’t even ask) and throwing off my plans for a nap before enjoying my last night in the San Francisco, to being hit on by guys who could either be my father or my little cousins, to mother nature visiting mad early (I was prepared but pissed) , to canceling a wildlife eco boat tour on the bay because of mother nature’s visit, to realizing I don’t want to relocate to San Francisco as soon as I thought or was planning, to having a new crush (this I didn’t mind, who gets annoyed about meeting a cute cool guy? No one.), and connecting with one blogger I think is truly wonderful, Shelly Miller of Redemption’s Beauty (also didn’t mind this either, she was so helpful as my plans became unplanned).
By the time I got back east and was lying in bed after setting my alarm for an uncool 5:35am for work, I was laughing at my plans. It’s not like they were a little thrown off. It’s not like there was just one crazy unplanned day and all the others went as planned. No it was a week, day after day, of surprises. Now, I don’t want you to think my entire trip was awful. It wasn’t. Far from it. It just didn’t go as I anticipated. Initially I struggled with some of the surprises, like being lied to. I don’t think that will ever give me warm tingly feelings unless the lie is something like “I know we said you won one hundred thousand dollars, but you won one million dollars.” But then some of the surprises were actually nice, like the crush- the respectful, funny, handsome, non-creepy crush (although I don’t think being non creepy should be a surprise).
Photo courtesy of Sabby.Alexa @ Zing Revolution
And then there was the getting lost for two hours and then getting to my destination that I was only 15 minutes from. Although I had spent all that time wandering around, I did eventually reach my destination and the person with whom I met was extremely gracious and our meeting was very productive. Things didn’t go as expected initially but the goal was ultimately achieved.
So why am I talking about the simply unplanned life? Because here’s what I am learning- plans don’t always go as planned and somehow you still LIVE. In fact, I am learning when I am willing to forgo my plans, instead of leaving room for anxiety, frustration, and stress I make room for a variety of things to happen, including room for whimsical, joy filled, exciting things. Plus, plans aren’t always necessary. Don’t get me wrong, and don’t ignore any posts here on the blog that discuss the value of preparation and organization. Plans have a purpose. I don’t think it’s a good idea to go through life not planning for anything. I do however think it’s really important to know when to let go of the plan and realize that sometimes you can reach your purpose through totally unplanned means.
Photo courtesy of Spanish Vogue February 2010
What plans do you need to let go of to LIVE? When’s the last time your plans didn’t really work out but you still reached your goal or you were pleasantly surprised? Sharing is caring! xxoo