4 Ways to Get Back to Planning When You’ve Lost Focus
You’ve fallen off the planner’s wagon! Ack!
Nothing is worse than that feeling you get when you realize that you haven’t touched your binder or organizational tool for a couple of weeks. Now, you’re behind. Crap.
When it comes to planning for the holidays, its only ever a problem if you never go back to doing anything at all. Slipping right back in to your old habits can happen but the idea is to pick up where you left off and make the most of the time you have left.
At this point, we are now in September. Kids have either already started school or are about to head off to their first day and you’re getting into the swing of fall decor, planning for Halloween and looking forward to sweater weather.
This means, if you’ve stopped planning (like I did the last two weeks), there’s time to pick up where you’ve left off.
Now, if you’re reading this and its already December, taking a different approach to recuperating is going to require cutting things out of your plan.
Here are a few tips to get you back on track:
1. Keep Calm & Review Your Binder
Make some tea, pour a glass of wine, whatever calming drink you like to consume, get it first.
Remember, this is all supposed to be part of the fun of the holiday season and gives you something to look forward to.
Once the thing causing the delay is behind you or far enough out of the way that you can devote some time, give yourself 30 minutes to relax with your beverage of choice and flip through your organizational tool.
Remind yourself about the plans you’ve prepared so far, including the calendar itself and add any notes or changes you may have noticed along the way.
This is why we create a planning tool!
2. Skip to the time sensitive tasks
Forget anything else on the planning timeline.
If you need to book travel arrangements, do it first. If you are behind on ordering your holiday card, order them, now.
The things that require advance bookings or time for making and shipping, focus on those first.
If there is a presale for tickets to a holiday show, but you’ve missed it and now tickets are sold out, accept that you won’t be going there this year (sorry!).
Instead, find something different to see or do or enjoy a night off and make the most of your time.
3. Accept that life throws you curveballs
One of the biggest challenges when planning anything is the idea that your life can change in an instant.
There are the larger, more serious life scenarios like getting sick, a loved one passing away, losing a job that can throw us though the biggest loop.
Then there are the smaller life scenarios like work being crazy, last minute forms and projects for your child’s school, storms passing through and flooding the neighborhood, among a slew of others that can stand in your way.
Whatever comes along, especially when planning for the holidays, accept your life’s moment(s) and keep going.
No one ever succeeded in life by lingering on a moment that you can’t change.
Allow yourself to feel the feelings you need to feel, fill out that paperwork, take on the task that requires your focus and get back to planning for the holidays when you’re ready. And if you’re not, then tuck that binder away for next year.
4. Take a shopping trip
For some, shopping can be therapeutic and for some, shopping for others is even better.
To help clear your head, go holiday shopping. Get back into the mindset of planning early and find a gift for at least one person on your list.
If its mindlessly browsing the internet or walking into a local shop, retune your brain to thinking about the holidays and shop til you drop!
The key takeaway is to be kind to yourself. Planning is never about being so strict to your plan that it stresses you more when things happen. Planning is there for you when you forget something or take time away to focus on something else that requires your attention. Because we created our planning tool, we now can fall back on it any time to help us get back on track.