I love planning road trips. Having something to look forward to, getting everything packed and ready, then setting out with my family to have a nice adventure away from home together – it’s always so much fun.
However, with there being so many people to account for and get ready to leave the house, and the wide array of things that must be put in backpacks and coolers and bags, and with all the decisions that have to be made on where we’re going and how long we’ll stay … there is sometimes more tension than joy.
My response to the difficulties in these situations is impatience and irritation. Being ready before everyone else makes me anxious to go.
But it doesn’t have to be this way.
What’s the best way to respond when things don’t go exactly as we plan – or exactly how we’d like for them to go?
Hi guys! I hope that you’re all having a great day. 🙂 ❤ Today’s post, as you can see, is an addition to Cultivating A Joyful Life! Just like with the other topics I have covered in this series, this is something that I truly need to work on, and I actually am in my life at the time of writing this post. ❤
Falling into bad habits is unfortunately easy, and struggling to accept when situations go a different way than we desire for them to is a definite problem of mine. However, because I have been able to acknowledge this, I am now walking down the path to healing, making so much progress along the way. ❤
Before we go on, I would like to share with you how this topic relates to a very similar one in the garden of our hearts.
I am not much of a gardener – funny, as I write this series pretty weekly, haha; I prefer to cultivate spiritual gardens, rather than real ones. Anyway, I am most certain that there are occasions in a gardener’s life when a plant does not grow, or it dies, or it’s attacked by bugs, which would all be unpleasant surprises. However, there can also be happy surprises. Maybe the plant bounces back, or does much better than the gardener thought it would; all sorts of things won’t go as “planned” in a garden! And the same is true in the garden of our hearts.
There are many things that we have control over (to a point). This provides us with security and peace of mind. But what happens when something turns out differently, or slightly worse? Chaos may ensue. It definitely depends on the person, specific situation, and other details involved.
Today, I have shared with you some helpful tips that I’ve come up with to help you guys, as well as myself, to take everything in stride – to be able to accept changes of plan. ❤ I hope that you enjoy!
Accepting Changes of Plan –
My 5 Tips for Greater Peace
Before we get into this, I would like for you to first, if you will, imagine a recurring situation you’ve encountered before – one that always tries your patience. Whatever this might be for you (for me, it’s road trip preparations), I’d like you to keep this in mind while you read my little tips below. Applying them to this area of trouble in the future could help you so much! I know that it will for me.
When a situation comes up that you weren’t expecting …
1 ~ See the positivity in it.
There are so many beautiful surprises that come about because of altered plans! Just because something isn’t happening exactly as you thought it would, doesn’t mean that it won’t be a greater situation for you in the long run.
Dare to see what awesome future situations might come about because of the little differences.
2 ~ Exhibit patience.
On many different occasions in my life, I have been the first one ready when we’re going on a family road trip. It has been difficult for me to exhibit patience over a situation when I feel like others (or I know) are lagging behind.
Whether we leave later than planned because someone didn’t realize how late it was, something took longer than they realized, or an emergency came up, etc, the intent isn’t at all to make me upset. Life happens, and some people are simply more time-conscious than others.
Patience is such an important attribute to possess, and it’s something I’m always working at strengthening.
3 ~ Be understanding.
Like I mentioned above, it’s easy to start judging or placing blame when plans are changed. However, something important to keep in mind is that nobody is perfect, and we all need a bit of understanding sometimes.
The funny thing is, I was the last one to be ready for the last trip we went on – meaning that I was running around the house while everyone waited for me in the car. I hadn’t realized how long it would take me to do my makeup and finish packing my bag, so there I was – in the same situation members of my family have been in before.
I deeply appreciated that they didn’t get upset at me (much like I have at them in the past…). That is something I want to remember; we’ve all been there, and we all deserve a bit of understanding.
4 ~ Look at the situation differently.
When something doesn’t go as I hoped it would in my life, one of the things that really helps me is to look at what’s happening in a different light. Just because you leave the house later than you meant to, or you get stuck in traffic, or stuck in a long checkout line at the store – there are often good, unforeseen reasons for things going differently than we think.
Even if nothing is obvious at first, look for the positivity in your current situation.
5 ~ Do the best you can to make things better.
On the occasions that I have been ready to leave the house first, I’ll usually pace around and mentally will (lol) everyone else to also get ready. This is not all that useful, as I could have spent that time helping someone get ready.
Even when something appears out of our control, there are still ways we can make things better for everyone – if even in the smallest of ways. So, in my recurring situations, I could help someone pack their bag, or package up all the snacks (which is my usual job for these trips, lol), or help with my baby sister, etc.
It may be that in your situation, you can’t actually do anything to help out. If that’s the case, you may be able to be emotional support. It’s definitely something to keep in mind, so that you and anyone else involved can be at peace. ❤
Thank you so much for reading! I know that the tips I’ve listed above will be a huge help to me in the future. Definitely let me know in the comments below:
How do YOU cope with changes of plan?
thanks to jirah and elline for my signature! xx