Spontaneous Blog Post #5: To hell with “the plan”…

I have spent my whole post-school life attempting to live religiously to some form of ‘safe’ and ‘secure’ structure, known to most people as “the plan” (or however you wish to term it). It has now become apparent to me that, by putting so much stress on living to this “plan” has resulting in “the plan” changing so many times that I fail to even call it a “plan” anymore…

So here it comes, the theme of today’s rant- the “ditch the plan” and the “stick it to the man” internal revolution, within the realms of my own obsessive psyche. Was I a fool to create such a plan, believing that it would all work out? Did I really think that just because I had a plan in place, that everything would work out and that I would be as all secure and content as my psyche demands? Perhaps I have only felt “secure” this whole time because my “plan” was real in my head yet in reality I only had a “pla” …

pla-phoebe.jpg

The stress on every youth, to have some sort of meaningful career in your younger adult years is just unbelievable. I came out of school wanting to be a videographer/ movie editor, was offered the chance to go to university at 17 but just wanted to work for myself. My first every job was working for myself, however as a timid 18 year old during a credit crunch in rural West Cumbria, it wasn’t really the best time or career path for me… From then on I was in and out of regular jobs, training to be a counselor at the local Adult Education Center in the evenings which eventually lead me onto university to pursue a degree rather then the Diploma I failed to complete…

All of this time, bar the first term of university where I was a typical student, I had some sort of structure for my future; however I was always on the lookout for alternative little qualifications, like the level 2 fitness course I took over the first year Summer break. It’s like I still wasn’t convinced that counseling wasn’t for me- and that’s exactly what it was. I didn’t want to be a counselor either- what now? Well in only semester 1 of second year, I discovered The Coaching Academy, which appealed much more to me than therapy and I invested in their Diploma program for Personal Performance Coaching. This is the training I am still undergoing and probably the best training course I have been part of. I love how there is no pressure to pass in a certain time- it is fully flexible, which has allowed for the rut I found myself in shortly before deciding to leave my university course in October.

So, almost 10 years after leaving school, I am no further forward in terms of having “a meaningful career” which we are told is so important to us during our GCSE years at school. I am now working part-time, while still working out a means of earning by doing something I love for the rest of the time, my partner is growing his own brand as well as working and completing his own art degree. We are not quite “there” with what I wanted to achieve with “the plan” but we are OK.

After years of focusing so much on this “plan”, I have watched others around me achieve amazing things that weren’t even part of their “plan”. For example, my Mam has ground a crafts business and discovered an artistic skill she didn’t even know she had. She is now self-employed and grown in many ways doing something she loves. Find her hand felted creations here.

It is being aware of people’s experiences like this, which has brought to my attention so much focus and stress I placed on “the plan”. Just wanting to achieve so much before I have even started my own family, wanting to seize every opportunity and achieve highly in fear of letting my family down. I had always been successful at school and up until I started changing my mind about stuff, constantly making amendments to “the plan” and the whole time I guess I haven’t really known what I want to do, allowing myself to feel like a failure. It was during this low point, when my husband-to-be helped me realize that no matter what I had achieved or failed, we were still OK and at least, together, we are headed somewhere now…

I have now come to a point where I am very much aware of what success means to me and how it differs very much from society’s expectations. Perhaps if I’d known this 10 years ago, we may be further forward- or not. Perhaps we learn these lessons in life to teach our own children and perhaps when we are finally “there” it will feel like more of an achievement because I finally built up the courage to now think “to hell with the plan” from now on…

A plan is important, however the amount of focus or stress placed on this is certainly not. It’s good to have an overall structure, especially if there is something specific you are aiming for. I guess because, on some level I didn’t know exactly what I was aiming for, things haven’t really gone to plan- therefore I say “to hell with the plan” and just be excited to see what is going to happen- remove fear of the unknown and allow things to happen in time.

This is rather significant lesson I have recently discovered and provided me with a little “light bulb” moment, so I thought I would like to share it with you all. How do you feel about having a “Plan” and have you found it helpful or unhelpful?

Thank you for taking an interest in this post. Follow or subscribe to email reminders for future posts like this 🙂

All the best,

Heather ^_^

Picture from Google Images – Friends screen shot

 

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