So… how many back up plans do you have?
As a working mum I KNOW that you are used to thinking on your feet – ready to drop everything and run should a call come from school, pre-school or daycare, prepared with 100 tricks up your sleeve if your little dahling comes up with a bizarre food whim (my girl decided she couldn’t eat ’round food’ for about a year and was incredibly surprised to discover that pizza, pancakes and biscuits could come in versions with angles), 7 ways to dry washing, 4 options to get the smell of vomit off the lounge-room floor and 20 or so techniques to hide vegetable combinations in meals.
Do you know what I’m talking about?
Truth is these options and the many ways to get things done is very important. It means that like our foremothers we can be resourceful and avoid disappointment if things don’t work out perfectly the first time.
I remember learning MS Word and discovering that there were at least 3 ways to perform most functions and took enormous delight to learn that parenting could actually be quite similar.
When plan A, B, C – alphabet starts creeping into other areas of life be prepared for trouble…
There’s a very fine line between being flexible and prepared, and being unable to make a decision or worse ending up in a situation where you are so in love with failure that you forget to give plan A a chance.
For most of my life I’ve been smitten with the whole alphabet of options that are on offer to apply to any given situation. I cunningly avoided disappointment for most of my adult life because I was not attached to any particular outcome. While this served me very well in terms of being a generally easy person to get along with and while that enabled me a sound level of success in business and life what it did have a cost.
The cost was that I had to bend and flex each time something came up – and as you know in life as a working mum stuff comes up each and every day. It meant that while I could dream up and hold onto big goals there was always the niggling thought in the back of my mind that I wouldn’t get there – and that was OK because I’d just be happy with the pathway that plan B, C, or X would deliver.
Deciding that any plan other than A would be acceptable meant that somehow, somewhere I would always be at the whim of destiny, and for that matter my needs and goals would always be second to somebody elses.
So, with a heavy heart I decided to put plans C onwards to rest.
Deciding that plan A comes first is not always a simple task but over time I’ve discovered some very helpful techniques to make it easier:
* Make sure those around you know what you are trying to do and that it’s important to you
* Set yourself time every day to work on Plan A
* Reward yourself as you reach your goals and notice how you grow as you stick to your guns
* Notice how much easier your goals are achieved when you focus your thoughts on the goal, rather than all of the options that you can take if your goal doesn’t work out
* Get an accountability buddy who will help you to stay on track (Actually it was a conversation with my accountability buddy / associate / friend that inspired this post)