How’s 2016 going for you so far?

Have you created your goals, plotted your plans, and come up with a guiding word for the year?

If you have, good for you!

No? That’s okay; you are in good company (if you consider me good company).

I proclaim this to be the year of not falling prey to the online, motivational, rah-rah, you can do it, plan your life in 5 easy steps, noise that takes over the interwebs at the beginning of each year.

Mind you, I rarely succumb to that stuff—I’m not easily convinced, nor am I a joiner. I’m more likely to reject something that I haven’t tested myself—especially if the popular kids are doing it (all the more reason for me not to do that thing, whatever that thing is).

I didn’t create a successful business by following the crowd—and I am not going to start now. And you don’t have to follow the crowd, either.

The Year of Deliberate Un-Planning

I’m not much for long-range planning.

I don’t like to (pretend to) have my life scripted out, because life always shows me it has other plans for me, anyway. The more I resist what is, the more I suffer.

Sure I have ideas—things I’d like to do, but none of that 5-year goal-making for me. Planning too far in advance scares me.

If you’ve been reading the Ampersand (newly renamed—did you notice?) for a while, you’ll know that I have a little obsession with contemplating death as a way to stay present for the best life now. Because now is all we’ve got.

I’m good at mini-planning.

Need to pack and move 1,200 miles (like I’m doing next week) on fairly short notice? I’m your gal. Wanna plan a road trip and figure out the best places to camp and nosh on vegan eats? Yep, me, again.

But I don’t want to plan the next three months, much less the next year, because no one knows what will happen—in 3 months or twelve.

I’d rather be open to possibilities.

Often, I think that over-planning is a way to avoid the life right in front of us. When we are so busy living for a future date, we don’t have to think about today.

What about you? Are you a planner? If so, is there something that you are avoiding? Or, are you a go-with-the-flow person? What do you think that says about you?

Talk to me—I’d love to know your thoughts on planning, if you do it, and how you do it if you do.

image: Joanna Kosinka