Planning is a Waste of Time

I did a poll over the weekend on my Instagram stories about planning. I plan every Sunday, and I tossed up a pic of my planning and asked if people were planners or not. 67% of the people who responded to the poll said they were NOT planners. 

I even got a DM from one saying that it’s been her position for a long time that planning is a waste of time. *insert head exploding emoji here* 

I don’t think she alone, considering the numbers that the poll showed. 

Why is this? How is planning a waste of time?

First, let’s define the lexicon. Words mean things, after all, so let’s be clear what I mean when I say waste. 

To waste (verb) – to expend carelessly, extravagantly or to no purpose. 

Hmmmm. That just made this interesting. 

Now, read this sentence again: “Planning is a waste of time.”. 

In other words, planning is an extravagant, careless expenditure of your time. 

I happen to STRONGLY disagree. 

See, for me, NOT planning is a waste of my time. 

When I don’t plan, I spend a ridiculous amount of time and energy on stress, overwhelm and frustration. I have lots of projects on the go at any one time; client work, books I’m editing, my parenting column, the advertising column that I write for, content creation clients, this blog, my podcast, not to mention that I have two kids, a husband and a mother living with me, and a household to run. I also occasionally go out with friends, attend other social engagements, and do fun things. Plus, I do LOTS of self-care. 

How do I manage it all? 

I PLAN. 

And because I plan, I rarely drop any balls. I’m not saying it never happens, but it’s rare. 

How does planning help me stay out of overwhelm? It’s pretty simple actually. I see my planner as a sort of external memory storage. I don’t have to remember all of the things I am responsible for all the time because I have put them all into my planner which gets it out of my head. This frees up critical mind space. When I have space in my head, I feel at ease, dare I say even peaceful. Which means I can be creative, patient, and kind as often as I am called upon to be. Mostly. 

As far as I see it, I save time and energy by spending 30 minutes on Sunday planning out my week. It’s honestly like a cognitive colonic (<3 alliteration) that clears my head, gives me a sense of control over my life, and frees me from stress and overwhelm. 

Now, why wouldn’t you want that? 

Is planning hard for you? 

Do you resist it?

Are you sitting over there going “That’s nice, but…”

Talk to me. What is your sticking point? What is your obstacle? 

Are you so married to and comfortable with your overwhelm that you are scared to let it go? 

Are you just “not good” at planning?

Do you resist the rigidity?

Knowing where you get stuck helps me help you get unstuck. 

Comment below or send me an email. 

I am here for you. 

Xo

Steph 

Check out the podcast that goes along with this episode on Spotify

2 thoughts on “Planning is a Waste of Time

Add yours

  1. Hey Stephanie. Two things happen when I plan. 1) Something comes up to interrupt my plan. 2) It’s hard to switch from doing one thing to doing another. Like if I’m on a roll with my writing, I don’t want to switch to the other thing that’s waiting. I also am preparing a women’s retreat weekend, and unexpected stuff comes up all the time. A client who has a problem, or the venue that needs answers right away. It’s hard to focus when a number of things are pulling at my attention. Okay that’s three things, but you get the drift.

    1. I totally do. Different people plan different ways I think. And for me, I’m not so much married to the structure of the plan so much as freed by the knowledge that I have a solid list of what I’ve committed to so I can show up fully.

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