Learning NOT to Plan

I am a serious planner.  I plan my work day.  I plan my morning walks.  I plan meals. I plan holidays.  And of course I plan vacations. If you said, Bfth, it sounds like you are a compulsive planner, I'd agree.

That's not to say that I'm not flexible.  I think I am, but I like having a plan in place, even if I know it's going to be deviated from.  And I'm definitely uneasy when I DON'T have a plan.


So when I looked at the school calendar and saw that my son had the last Friday and Monday of September off, I went into planning mode.  A four day weekend!  I could take 2 days off and we could do something fun as a family!  Yes!

So I started researching and planning.  The planning even lead to this post.  I started to narrow things down, broached the subject with my boys and googled!  I was ready to make some reservations, when I double checked the calendar and...

Tuesday (before the Friday I'd been planning) I have been summoned to jury duty.  Its 2 days (which would be fine since that would mean I'd be finished by Wednesday) OR one trial.  With my luck... (I've been on cases before.)  And before you recommend that I get a postponement, I've already had one, since I was originally called in August. 


Of course I could set something up and risk it.  (Which completely stresses me out.) I could bag the whole idea.  (Which frustrates me no end.)  Or I could wing it.  I could just see how things go and if they DO go my way, we could still go away.

This last thought is the most logical.  It has also given me a tension headache.  Going away without any plan at the last minute?  So NOT me.  Thinking about it my shoulders hunch, my teeth start to grind and I get completely on edge.  So on edge that I literally had to walk away from my desk, go to lunch and run some errands just so I WOULDN'T think about it.

Of course I DID think about it, but I managed to change my mindset.  I reminded myself that one of the best trips we ever did was not really planned.  Back in 2005 we didn't know exactly WHEN my son would be born so we had no hotel reservations.  When the call came, it was the middle of the night and we'd need a room during the summer high season for approximately a week.  We managed to pull that one off.  Why couldn't we do the same in the fall?  Even if it was peak foliage time, we WILL find something, even if it isn't "perfect." (What is perfect anyway?  When I've researched "perfect" places to stay in the past, they've never lived up to my expectations, so why have expectations to begin with?)

Being even MORE logical, with no plans, if the weather is NOT good, we can do something else.  With no reservations set in stone, if a hurricane or Nor'easter sets its sights on us, it doesn't matter.  I won't have to drive during a thunderstorm or make the best of the situation...because there is no situation!  If we DON'T go anywhere, I've lost nothing.  If we DO, I've only gained!

Learning NOT to plan is NOT easy for me.  But I'm going to give it a try this September.  I'm going to do my best to "roll with the flow wherever it goes...and it's rolling out of here."  (Thank you Michael Nesmith.)


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