Planning VS Doing: My Struggles with Schedule Management

A wise man once said, “Don’t plan the plan if you can’t follow through.”

This wise man was Dr. Horrible, and he doesn’t even know my life, why is he judging me?!

I bought a planner with some of my Christmas money at the beginning of this year. It was actually intended as more of a practice planner because it was less expensive than the one I really wanted (some of them are so gosh darn gorgeous). I didn’t want to spend the money if I didn’t actually benefit from the thing, you know?

This planner is cutesy and comes with inspirational stickers, with fantastic motivational quotes scattered throughout.

You’re wondering if I’ve used it, right? I have. I really have. I’ve made an honest effort to utilize it in a way that helps me manage things in life, and I’ve written my to-do list in it every single day. But what I’ve learned so far is that a planner isn’t going to help you actually, uh, accomplish things for some reason?

There have of course been days where I’ve crossed off everything and have felt extremely good about it, but then there are others where one item on the list gets pushed from Monday to Tuesday to Wednesday to Thursday and so on. It’s usually something fun, too, like updating this blog or making a YouTube video.

My original plan going into the year was to post here every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and post on YouTube every Tuesday and Thursday, as well as write at least 150 words for my book each day. While planning this and coming up with content is easy enough for me, it just hasn’t played out that way. I can’t help but wonder if it’s my fault?

Haha, no, yeah, it is my fault. But I do have a theory about why.

One thing I think I need to work on, and I think everyone could benefit from thinking about, is prioritizing in a way that doesn’t just get things done, but that actually makes us happy. As a society, we have definitely become very production based, so our brains are almost wired to feel useless if we are spending time on what most would consider unnecessary or frivolous tasks. If we aren’t working on things that generate “real life” results, are we even working?

The truth is, I haven’t been strict on myself when it comes to these more enjoyable things because something in the back of my head says I don’t have to do them. It is not necessary that I work on my blog or channel or writing, so if it doesn’t happen, that’s not a loss. But at the end of the day, if working on my blog, channel, or writing generates happiness and a sense of accomplishment for me, it is a loss if I don’t do it. Because I genuinely want to do those things, that’s why they’re on the list.

My therapist mentioned this as well in regards to exercise. Oftentimes we are so busy throughout the day that exercise is an expendable activity. We make excuses about not doing it, push it back to another hour or another day. But if we treat it like an important appointment, same as we would a date or a trip to the doctor, something that shouldn’t be skipped, we could potentially train ourselves to never miss a day. It sounds weird to be scheduling (and following that schedule) hobbies or activities, but desperate times…

So Starla’s wise old advice to everyone today is to not just plan to do things you love. Planning is fun and sure looks pretty, but it’s not enough. Do the things you love. This weekend I challenge you to make time for yourself. Don’t push back the things you want to do and only do the things you have to. Do all of it! Make a plan for your happiness, your health, your mind, and follow through.

As the sweet little planner stickers say: Make it Happen!

Much love to all <3 Let me know if you’re able to accomplish this this weekend!

2 thoughts on “Planning VS Doing: My Struggles with Schedule Management

  1. Speaking as someone who has used a planner for the past nine years: I FEEL YOU. And you are CORRECT! PLAN THE FUN THINGS, THE HAPPY THINGS, THE BEAUTIFUL THINGS…and also the stuff that has to be done, like VACUUMING. >.<

    I feel like I should introduce you to a thing I discovered last year: the Bullet Journal Method. It’s actually made me a more productive person that is also very happy. I use the BuJo method along with habit trackers to construct 1) a list of everything I HAVE to do (and why), 2) a list of everything I WANT to do (and why), and 3) a game plan to get BOTH done. BOOM! Happy AND productive! :D

    PS: The Why part is, imho, very important. This helps me motivate myself. For example:
    Clean out Litter Box (good task) -> Why? -> Makes cats happy. (good answer)
    Finish math homework (good task) -> Why? -> Because I need to pass (BAD answer)
    Finish math hw (good task) -> Why? -> I need a C+ to pass so I can keep my scholarship and thus afford university (good answer)
    Draw fairies (fun task) -> why? -> because I wanna (bad answer)
    Draw fairies (fun task) -> why? -> fairies make me feel happy and whimsical (good answer)
    Draw fairies (fun task) -> why? -> I’m bored (bad answer)
    Draw fairies (fun task) -> why? -> I want to practice action poses (good answer)

    I don’t know if this makes sense or is just the mad ramblings of a caffeine addict. Anyway. The MOST important part of the BuJo method is to explore and find out what works for YOU! What will help you become the best you that you can possibly be. Which we all want to see. ^_^

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply to Starla Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.