Archives for posts with tag: planning


I have failed. I bought a paper planner calendar.

A few years ago, I jumped on the electronic bandwagon and ditched my Franklin Planner vowing to go paperless for my appointments. I got a sense of freedom knowing that my trusty smart phone would tell me where I need to be and when. It does that. I can write notes and keep my life organized in the cloud.

But I can’t plan there. I need a pen and paper. I need to draw. Make squiggly lines. Create lists.

Maybe there is something hard-coded in my brain about the tactile feeling of a writing instrument in my hand and thought generation. I always feel more creative with a pen or pencil in my hand. Even rolling a pen in the palm of my hand helps me problem solve.

I am not a Luddite. I have used project planning tools, idea generating software and mind mapping. I am a big Evernote fan. I have nested in the Google family of integrated products. So, why can’t I think there?

What is it about paper and a pen? Is my tactile need so embedded in my brain that I cannot lure my thoughts out unless my hand is firmly gripping a pen? Am I squeezing mental material from the pencil’s lead?

What I do know is that I haven’t enabled creative neural connections with digital planning. My (mental) connections to pen and paper are burned into my grey matter spanning a fifty plus year time frame. And, with that I am willing to concede defeat and stop forcing a unrewarding pattern on my creative juices.

I will embrace my pen. Pat my paper. And create.


View of a winter storm through the kitchen window

Winter 2013

Woke up this morning to a day scheduled as a blizzard aftermath. School cancelled last night. Predictions of snow accumulations greater than a foot. All creation coming to a full stop.

But, surprise … only a few inches of powdery fluff. How does that happen?

With all the weather models and historic data, can’t weather forecasting be more accurate?

Not really. Because you don’t know all the variables that can and may happen. A storm moves in a direction miles from the anticipated route and freezing rain is on the menu and not snow. It just happens. We have to deal with the different consequences.

We can grouse about plans gone askew. Another snow day this early in the season and we think when will the kids get out of school this year? It is easy to change the outcome of our day by the vagaries of nature. But what about other aspects in life … all the plans we made or maybe didn’t do?

Dwight D. Eisenhower summed it up brilliantly when he said “In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable.” Prepare for the worst but accept the moment’s reality. Anticipate but act on the present condition.

You cannot do anything more. And, the “dealing” begins.

How ready are you when the plans are scrapped? A change in direction required? How do you deal?

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