Tag Archive | plan

Life is all about how you handle plan B

I like to plan. If I have a plan and I am organised I can prepare myself for all likely eventualities and I find that coping is much easier when I have a Plan B up my sleeve. Sometimes however I don’t have the will, the wherewithal, the inclination or the energy to plan and it becomes a chore.  I avoid it and stupidly I let things drift, living day by day and  moment by moment. That’s not a recipe for success for me. Quite the opposite it usually heralds disaster.

The past few months have been a “disaster” for me. Stubbornly refusing to plan my work schedule, my travelling, my eating, my exercise, my “me” time led to me being in a very dark place for a while but there is light at the end of the tunnel. A few days off to break out of the rut and to give myself time to review Plans A & B has worked wonders and I feel much stronger, emotionally more in control and now able to see a way forward out of the gloom. I won’t go so far as to say that peace and equilibrium is restored as that would be tempting fate but life is certainly looking more rosy than it did just a few weeks ago.

Onwards and upwards.

How do I stay focussed?

An interesting question for someone who fluctuates between the upbeat, confident and “kick-ass”, get things done mentality, and the gloomy, depressed, couldn’t-give-a-damn mode. Depression is unpredictable and strikes at random so unless you have Plan B waiting in the wings it can catch you unawares when “focus” is not in your vocabulary.

In good times focus comes naturally. I am  an inquisitive, energetic, interested, passionate, fun, devoted, loving employee, wife and mother. Jobs get done effortlessly, birthdays and Christmas are remembered, holidays are booked way in advance and everything is in its place and under control. This is focus.

When depressed however things are very different. It’s hard work. There is no focus. You flit from thought to thought, task to task nothing finished, no conclusions, no plans, birthdays and Christmas overlooked. Friends and family are disappointed and you feel disillusioned and upset by the lack of progress.

How do I manage this periodic inability to concentrate? I plan,plan, plan. Then I plan some more.

During the bad times, my days are divided up religiously into sections. From the time I get up to the time I go to bed everything I do has a time limit and its own window of opportunity. There is no room for surprises or unplanned events. It is the only way to get through the day and get everything done. It requires discipline, advance thinking and lots of lists and timetables.

But it works for me.

This is what Patrick Lindsay has to say about Focus in his book, “Be Happy”

Focus

It’s so easy to dissipate our energies,
to dilute our creativity on too many tasks at once.
Virtuosos apply all their skill and energy
to one aim at a time.
Select your key tasks.
Concentrate on one at a time.
Avoid distractions.
Marshall your skills.
Direct all your energies at your target.