Rest and Rejuvenation Day 7: When Plans Don’t Come Through

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Topic of the Day: 
Re-Thinking Plans 

There has never been a time in my life where so many of my plants did not come through. Doesn’t it feel like the most 2020 thing to say? And if I’m honest, I didn’t think I would actually talk about this in a post. But as I sat down to brainstorm ideas for the month of January, and I realize that my approach to handling my emotions and reactions to situations that don’t go as planned has changed quite a lot.

I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned it before on this blog but in 2016 and I applied for the Peace Corps. I was beyond excited for this opportunity and a part of me was convinced that I would get a position. However, in March 2017 in the middle of class, and I found out that I had not gotten the Peace Corps. Before this time in my life, or I would have shut down. In the comfort of my own room or space, I would probably have a breakdown. There would be a lot of crying and getting through those negative emotions so that I didn’t accidentally unload on someone else.

However, that day in March 2017, he did not cry. Instead, I simply felt a sense of determination. I was disappointed because I didn’t get the position but I wasn’t upset enough that I couldn’t tell other people. I was set to graduate from college in May of that year so there were a lot of “what’s next for you?“ Questions to be answered. It was incredibly terrifying for me to tell people that I actually had no idea what was next for me because I had not been excepted into the Peace Corps. Being able to openly tell people that I did not get this opportunity especially after publicly talking about the fact that I was pursuing it was my blowing to me.

Somehow, during my four years and hellish study abroad experience, I had gained a sense of maturity that I did not think I ever would. I distinctly remember that the first thing I did after not getting the Peace Corps was making another plan. By this time I knew that going into grad school right outside of undergrad was not an option. No, I had to decide if I wanted to get a professional job, travel, or work part time and focus the rest of it on something else. By the next week, however, I had been accepted into the Disney College Program at least until December 2017, my life was set.

So here are three things that I have learned in the past couple of years about how to handle plans that don’t come through:

  1. First, it’s OK to feel your emotions. I appreciate the fact that I have always given validity to my emotions. Regardless of whether they are positive or negative emotions, I have always allowed myself the chance to feel them. I am not the kind of person that can keep her emotions inside because I will burst. So, now the first thing I do whenever plans – – especially big plans – – don’t come through as to feel the full scope of my emotions. Most of the time and that includes a lot of crying and journaling.
  2. After I am finished taking all of my emotions I’ll take the time to make a plan. Most times in my life I have plans already in place that I then go to reevaluate. Four example, I have a plan for what I want to do in the next five days, five weeks, five months, and five years. I will take that written plan, reevaluate it, and add and change as necessary. These kind of plans give me enough stability to have some sense of future but it’s vague enough that I don’t feel suffocated by them. 
  3. And the last thing I do which has been the hardest thing to do is to take everything day by day. I am the biggest obstacle standing in my way and I always have been. One of the things I’ve always struggled with is simply going with the flow. Over the past couple of years, this has been what I have been working it to change. Luckily I have gotten a lot better at this.

And that’s about all I have for this post. It is a little bit shorter than others and I am actually very proud about this. Not only does this mean that I have a better understanding of who I am as a person but I have actually figured out a system that works for me. As much as I love being spontaneous person, I have come to realize that I have to have some areas of my life a little bit more planned out so that I can continue to be the free individual I want to be.

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