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Making Plans and Going with the Flow

Making Plans and Going with the Flow

Last week, my fiancÚ and I drove into San Francisco to enjoy a fireworks display in celebration of the 75th anniversary of the Golden Gate Bridge. We drove around for nearly an hour looking for a parking spot. It was infuriating, and we only saw the last five minutes of the display.

On our way back to the car, however, we stopped into a bar, where we found ourselves enjoying the night out, despite our earlier frustrations. The experience reminded me of the importance of coping witháuncertainty. In the past, I often planned my days meticulously – almost down to the minute. I left no room for spontaneity, and I would feel stressed if my day did not go as planned.

In recent years, however, it has become easier for me to be a bit more flexible. And that has allowed me to be open to experiences and possibilities that I would never have been exposed to if I had been trying to stick to a rigid schedule. Making plans is valuable. Having a schedule allows us to work efficiently and manage our time. But acknowledging that there will always be some degree of uncertainty in life, even when we make careful plans, allows us to keep our minds open to unforeseen opportunities.


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Sarah Cooke

Sarah Cooke is a writer living in California. She is interested in organic food and green living. Sarah holds an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Naropa University, an M.A. in Humanities from NYU, and a B.A. in Political Science from Loyola Marymount University. She has written for a number of publications, and she studied Pastry Arts at the Institute for Culinary Education. Her interests include running, yoga, baking, and poetry. Read more on her blog.


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10:13AM PST on Nov 28, 2012

do a cobo of planning of whatever ;)

9:39AM PDT on Oct 27, 2012

Thank you for sharing.

7:35PM PDT on Oct 6, 2012

It's good to learn to relax and be flexible. Some of the most fun things are the ones that are unexpected and pop up out of the blue :)

7:18PM PDT on Oct 6, 2012

Agreed. It's also good to plan unplanned things, for example, earmarking a day where you will not plan anything and just go with the flow. Ideally, I think that a balance between planning and not planning is probably best.

12:58AM PDT on Sep 11, 2012

Good point.

12:47AM PDT on Aug 23, 2012

Thank you for the interesting post.

1:06PM PDT on Jun 7, 2012

Having a meticulously planned day is hell, especially if things don't go according to plan. It can actually be worse for you than benefitting you. Huge stress factor!!

8:20AM PDT on Jun 6, 2012

Congratulations on that change. It is very important to find balance between planning and spontaneity.

12:19AM PDT on Jun 5, 2012

Good thoughts, thank you.
Plans and schedules are good to give a framework and prevent stagnation (or forgetting things), but leaving lots of room for spontaneity or unforeseen circumstances is essential.

4:39PM PDT on Jun 4, 2012

Many times those unforseen oportunities are the real jewels we come across.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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