Real Life: Best Laid Plans…

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I am a planner. Always have been, probably always will be. But it’s no secret that you can make all the plans you want, and it doesn’t always mean it will turn out the way you think. Without going too much into specifics (hopefully I can soon!), this happened to me in a big way recently. There I was, daydreaming about how my plans would go, and — boom! snap! — it probably was just not going to happen. There was that fleeting moment of disappointment, that feeling when you need to readjust your expectations, reset your compass, get your bearings again. And then I felt really excited by the new path that could be created because of the one that got blocked.

I’m sure this has happened to you too, right? One thing doesn’t happen, but another one does, and while you initially feel disappointed or anxious about it, it ends up being better in the end. The difference in this experience, for me at least, is that in the past, I’d let the disappointment period last longer than it should. It felt so much easier to be more “woe is me” than to embrace a totally new idea — maybe for even days or weeks on end. This time, with this particular situation, I was much quicker to embrace the new plan. 

This surprised me, if I’m being honest. I thought I’d be more upset about the change than I was. It made me think that as I’ve gotten older, I’m becoming more and more adaptable. I mean, I was always reasonably adaptable, even as a kid, but now, things just seem to roll off my back a little more. I take things in stride. I’ve been trying to figure out what prompted this change, to be more easy going, more selfless, more go with the flow. I have a few theories, mostly having to do with entrepreneurship, marriage, and (puppy) motherhood, but really, the exciting part for me is that there’s been a change at all. I always heard that your 30s is truly when you come to know yourself, be okay with things, and prioritize parts of your life most effectively, and I must admit, I’ve been looking forward to that feeling for a long time. As I approach the new decade (about a year and a half away now!), it feels like it might actually be happening!

I realized this is all kind of vague since I’m like The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills over here and can’t tell you what we’re actually talking about in this instance. But you get where I’m going, right? How do you adapt to lightning fast changes? Well? Not at all? Do you cope with ice cream? Or (somewhat like me and perhaps foolishly) just make more plans…with a side of pizza and a bottle of wine?

{Image Credits: Dan McMahon for Inside Closet, Decade, Founders & Followers, via Pinterest}

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21 Comments

  1. 2.6.13

    So great to hear this, today! Thanks for your constant encouragement!

    • 2.6.13
      vmacandcheese said:

      Was funny, I had already drafted the post when I saw
      your tweet…it worked out well! :) We all go through
      things, and just know I’m sending you positive thoughts,
      lady!

  2. 2.6.13

    This post is really great and inspiring. I have been dealing with a lot of rapid career changes, location changes, and it feels like life keeps taking me on these neverending sharp turns. I feel like I have found a pretty surefire method of dealing (at least at this life stage): cry, freak out, hyperventilate for a day (or two), rationalize and make plans to bring some stability in other areas of my life, and focus on the positives of the situation. While definitely not the best method ever (tantrums aren’t exactly lady like), it has gotten me through some major curveballs.

    Looking forward to my 30’s and the days of serenity in dealing with new adventures.

    Well done lady!

  3. 2.6.13
    Katrina said:

    I’ll be honest; I absolutely hate change. My husband is spontaneous and likes to randomly do things without telling me until the last minute. So how do I cope? First, I eat my feelings. I’ve stashed away bags of chocolate at random places in the house so I always have a stockpile. While my butt doesn’t appreciate it, my sanity sure does. Once I’ve eaten enough to calm myself, I start to rationalize and formulate a plan. Eventually I come around and in most cases, the end result turns out to be better than I would have expected.

    All I can say is thank you for being so open and honest with your readers on here. It’s so refreshing to find someone who isn’t afraid to say what’s on her mind. You go, girl.

    xxoo, k

    http://parkerandwest.blogspot.com/

  4. 2.6.13

    At this time in my life I feel like things are constantly changing for me. I’m 22, a recent college graduate, and am in the process of trying to find the perfect career path (if that even exists!). I definitely feel like I’ve become quite adaptable in recent years. There have been so many changes in my life lately, and I am quickly learning that dwelling on any disappointments is simply not worth it. This is life, it’s going to keep moving, and I might as well learn to go along with things as they happen.

    Along the same lines, I also adapt really quickly to the positive things that happen in my life. Whenever something great happens (i.e. a chance to travel, getting an amazing internship or job opportunity, etc) I adapt to the change and move on to another goal right away. While it’s productive and beneficial to always set the bar at a new level, I do wish I could be grateful for the positive things that happen in my life a bit longer instead of moving on to the next goal so quickly.

  5. 2.6.13
    Hitha said:

    Oh, how I can empathize with this. I’m kind of going through the exact thing right now – on the surface, everything seems to be going just fine but I can’t help but be disappointed with certain results. It gets frustrating, and I often am dangerously close to throwing up my hands and quitting. I’ve found that taking a day or two off from the issue in question can help gain some much needed perspective.

    Also, talking to friends help :) Skype session soon!

  6. 2.6.13

    This is 100% my life right now, both the constant changes and the slowwwwwly getting better at dealing with them. It’s really helpful to see other people you respect blundering through the same things. Not that you don’t want their lives to be calmer, but at least it’s nice not to be alone!

  7. 2.6.13
    Annemarie said:

    I’ve been reading quite a few blogs for the past couple years, mostly lifestyle and fashion. I discovered your blog early this fall and it’s quickly become my favorite. You are the most real and genuine blogger I follow, and I absolutely love that you share very real parts of yourself in addition to your great taste and gorgeous design.

    As a planner too, I really identified with you on this. I’m trying to get better at just riding the change, but it’s definitely not my first reaction (or even second or third!)

    • 2.6.13
      vmacandcheese said:

      Annemarie, Thank you. Your words really touched me today!
      I truly appreciate the kind comment. :)

  8. 2.6.13

    So, this resonates with me. I was one and a half years away from completing my Master’s in Interior Architecture when a study abroad fell through and left me groveling for a way to make up those credits. The program was suuuper strict on it’s timeline to graduation. With some misguided information from my advisor and dean, I spent the start of my eighth semester walking into design firms in STL begging for an internship.
    Nothing came of it. And it was too late to sign up for classes (that I didn’t even know I could take). So I had to drop out and move back home. While I figured out a way to get any degree at my hometown college, I met Ethan.
    If I had gone to Italy and graduated and completed “my plan,” I would have never met my husband and moved to Alaska. Crazy, right?

  9. 2.6.13
    Chelsea said:

    As I planner, I feel you. And as a type-A, you would think that changing well-laid plans would be difficult for me, but I’ve found that it’s gotten easier as I’ve gotten older as well. I think it’s a combo of additional pulls being added to your life along with the maturity that comes with the ability to better understand the simply lack of control you have in the grand scheme of things…or it’s the big ‘ol glass of wine at the end of the day ;) Thanks for sharing these parts of your life and I look forward to when you can really share specifics (if you are up to it).

  10. 2.6.13
    Meghan said:

    Great post! Life is a whole lot of learning curves , early 20’s I handled it like my life was nearly ending whenever I faced disappointments but t hen something crazy bad/disappointing happened and now whenever I face a new challenge I say “oh megs you have been through far worse than this, this is early 20’s speed bumps” & brush it off, gotta love life lessons

    xo Meg

    http://meghansilva.blogspot.com

  11. 2.6.13

    No matter the problem, my answer is usually CHOCOLATE! :)

    I actually had a similar situation recently, and as a big planner that can be tricky to deal with. But after just a brief “what am I doing” moment, I got it together and am more excited about the new path.

    Glad you are on a new exciting one too!

  12. 2.6.13
    Lindsay said:

    I absolutely know what you mean! For me, it has been a 3+ year (ongoing) battle with infertility that we, of course, never saw coming.

    BTW, I am new to your blog ( I read your feature on Marion’s blog) and I really love it! Thanks!

  13. 2.6.13
    Tara said:

    Know the planner in you will always ensure you will successfully adapt. Thank you for sharing what you were able…can’t wait to hear more!

  14. 2.6.13
    Alex said:

    I had this exact thing happen to me today. We were going to put an offer in on a house today and I woke up this morning to an email that said they had accepted an offer already. It happens. Its the worst, but it happens.

  15. 2.7.13

    Wow! Reading this post is really spot on for me. I’m a planner too but recently I’ve been in such a rush to have the plans be a complete success. I’m constantly disappointed when nothing happens or nothing happens right now. Thank you for this post. It reminds me to be patient and if things change I just need to adapt.

  16. 2.7.13

    I recently found your blog, too, and it has quickly become my favorite. To be honest, you inspired me to start my own blog (very, very slowly).

    I really struggle with being both a planner and a controller. Recently, my life went in a very different direction from how I’d planned, and to be honest I have had a hard time bouncing back. BUT I’ve done things that I can control, like taking up running (and starting a blog)! It’s hard, but you seem like a woman with quite a bit of ingenuity, so I’m sure that things will work out for you!

  17. 2.7.13

    first of all, loving all of the thoughtful comments!

    glad to hear you’re learning and growing! each disappointment brings us closer to the person we are meant to be. i’ve been majorly bummed about opportunities that slipped through my fingers, only to have no regrets in the place i am now.

    also, at 31, i know myself so much better than i imagined i would when i was in my (even late) twenties… and it’s SO MUCH FUN to feel confident in my reactions and ability. x

  18. 2.15.13
    Erin said:

    girl, screw coffee or a drink? Can we just sit down for dinner and chat? I think we have a LOT of catching up to do!

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