Here’s to Planning (Slightly) Less

picjumbo.com_HNCK5911My friend’s response to seeing my Google calendar: “DEAR GOD Claire.”  After a mini rant about my addiction to organization, she rightly admitted that it is, in fact, “a beautiful calendar.”  It’s pretty much a color coded perfection that makes a rainbow look ordinary.

I will admit that I can be obsessive about planning details in advance.  Sorry that I just feel a need to know exactly what is going to happen and where I am going to be at any point in the day!  There was many a Saturday morning this summer when I returned from a 6am Hot Yoga class to find the rest of the house still sleeping.  That was the only time that worked for me, okay!?  And I knew that because the rest of the day was already mapped out on my calendar.  Aw yeahhh.

So yes, I have a problem.  While my need to efficiently orchestrate everything in my life often has its benefits, there isn’t much room for impulsive action.  Sigh.  These words from Joichi Ito, director of MIT’s media lab have me slightly rethinking my strategy.

If you plan your whole life, by definition you can’t get lucky.  So you have to leave that little slot open.

Sometimes the best moments aren’t planned.  They happen when you’re not looking and then all of a sudden you’re laughing and surrounded by your best friends.  Or when you walk a different way and see a gorgeous tree in full bloom.  I’ve found that some of the best opportunities have come from situations that didn’t go my way.  I was so sure I wanted something, didn’t get it, and was temporarily crushed.  BUT it always turns out better than I planned!  It’s something I definitely need to remind myself of every once in awhile, but my calendar’s not going anywhere.  Maybe I’ll schedule in some blocks for ‘free time’?


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