Are The Best Plans Spontaneous?

Are you spontaneous or a planner?There are several ways to approach life, but they all fall within a range of having either no plan at all, or having a plan so detailed and intricate it maps out the minutes in the day.  In truth, the approach you take is simply your approach—some love the freedom of spontaneity and others abhor it.

 

Count On It

 

Being one who plans more than not, I’m always in awe of those who can go without.  For me, being able to count on certain things happening at certain times and places is extremely reassuring.  I suppose this boils down to maintaining a sense of control—meaning I can control at least a part of my daily existence.  I seem to need that.  Somehow life without rules or goals of any kind seems too scary to contemplate.

 

An Issue Of Freedom?

 

Yet as much as I like to have at least a basic plan of attack, I’m equally aware that some people see “planning” as the enemy.  They would ask, “How can you be spontaneous or truly free if you have to stick to a rigid schedule?”   Implied, of course, is that spontaneity is a concept somehow better than its staid, unbending, fixed, and outwardly-rigid opposite.

 

Mix It Up

 

Life is a constant balancing act.

Do you ever wonder if you march to a different drummer? Maybe you do.

As in all things, it’s probably best to fall somewhere in the middle of the extremes.  There is joy, creativity, freedom of expression, and perhaps less stress to be found in spontaneity.  And there are benefits to careful planning like being on time for work or family functions, accumulating money for college, feeding your family, or saving for retirement.  Perhaps, a mix is best.

 

Pondering Outcomes

 

I do wonder who’s happier in the end: Is it the financially spontaneous and bankrupt soul who has experienced everything imaginable (both good and bad)? Or is it the near obsessive and sheltered planner who has grown a fortune through predictable and persistent attention to detail?  And if the choice really is this black and white, who would you rather be?

 

Whose Rules Are These Anyway?

 

In reality, the potential outcomes of life’s choices aren’t always clear at the moment we make them.  In addition, genetic make-up is bound to play a role—meaning some people may be born to be spontaneous and others to be died-in-the-wool planners.  Is our path carved in stone?  Who can say?

 

Peer Pressure

 

Beyond the issue of personal choice or genetics, it seems society also plays a significant role in this debate.  When economic times are good, it’s much easier to be carefree about work—there’s always another job, right?  Yet when jobs are scarce, the simple act of staying employed becomes a full-time juggling act—one with the potential to effect where you live and what or whether you get to eat.

 

Some Choice Is Forced

 

If success or even something as basic as our day-to-day survival wasn’t measured in financial terms, perhaps we’d all move toward a more spontaneous existence.  After all, who doesn’t want to be creative or have the freedom to experience life’s wonders at least some of the time?  The harsh reality, however, is money rules practically all of our choices, which, in turn, implies it forces us to make plans on some base level.

 

Judgment

 

No matter how you see yourself, or your place in the world, it never hurts to be more conscious in the way you go about making decisions.  If you choose to be spontaneous and carefree, choose it understanding the costs and risks involved—and the effect it has on other people who lack either the motivation or ability to be the same.  If you choose to be a planner, be certain you understand what freedom or opportunities you give up in the process of locking in on a particular course.  And either way, try not to judge too harshly—your opposite just runs on a different schedule and plays by a different set of rules.

 

If you enjoyed this post, you may also want to read:
Time To Shift Your Paradigm
The Life Timeline: Planning For A Brighter Future
Unbind The Chains And Unlock The Locks

 

 

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