It’s a Plan: Finding the Line Between Organized and Obsessed

  • Lifestyle
  • Claire Cavanaugh
  • September 23, 2017

I’ll be the first to admit I’ve always been a little plan-crazy. In many cases, this has been a strength of mine. I knew how many pages of Great Expectations I’d need to tackle each day to stay on top of my summer reading in high school. I never missed a due date in college. I kept a spreadsheet through my post-grad job search. However, I can’t deny it’s also proven to be one of my not-so-great qualities. I build unreasonable expectations. I crumble when I don’t know exactly what’s happening next. And sometimes, I butt heads with the more spontaneous people in my life.

And I expect I’m not alone in this. (Raise your hands, my fellow agenda-keepers.) Personally, finding the line between organized and obsessed is something I’ve been trying to work on lately – not just in professional endeavors, but through life in general. As a recent college graduate going on my third month in the workforce, there’s a lot ahead of me: some of it certain, some of it wide open. I now find myself intimidated by bits and pieces of both, but one thing is for sure: It’s nearly impossible to have a plan these days, and I’m starting to feel the effects. Here’s how I’m learning to cope. Fellow planners, take note (like I know you will)!

Remember What You Have to Look Forward To

It’ll likely take some practice to start seeing uncertainty as opportunity. To quote my grandmother, “no matter what you do, it leads to something else.” As a planner, chances are, you have a hard time following blind faith. But do your best to accept the path you’re on: it’s the only one you have, and wherever you may be, you’re on your way to somewhere else!

Start Something New

Maybe you’ve just transitioned into a new life phase like me, or some other unpredictable force has altered what you once knew. In these times, you may feel like you’ve lost your routine. So start a new one! Learn a new skill, pursue an activity you’ve always wanted to pursue, or explore a curiosity you’ve always had – and stick with it for at least a little while. These will be constructive ways to regain feelings of control and stability in your life.

Remember Where You Came From

In the rush of life’s planned and sudden transitions, it can be easy to forget your original motivations. Remember that path we discussed earlier? It’s just as important to look back as it is to look forward – especially if you find yourself feeling lost or stuck. Welcome a jolt from the memories of your biggest accomplishments, hardest falls, and greatest lessons. Because someday, you’ll be looking back on the ones you’re making right now.


What are your thoughts on planning? Comment below! 


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