Planning has become an integral part of human life. Since the time you start being aware of life, you are asked to plan life. You plan your studies, career, marriage, retirement, what kind of car you want to drive in 3-5 years, what kind of job you wish to do, what kind of house you want to live in, which country you want to get settled and on goes the list. Very often we are planning things 3, 5, or 10 years ahead. But how sure are you that things will go exactly as you planned or how sure are you if you will be alive tomorrow or the next minute or the next second? I have started writing this article, and the reality is that I am not sure if will be alive to complete this article. But we are so lost in the illusion of time, that a major part of our life goes in planning the future and spending hardly any time in the present, where life unfolds.
But what happens, when things don’t go as per your well-laid plan? This is when you might start blaming your luck, get anxious or stressed because things didn’t go as per your plan and now you are unaware of how to face this new situation that came out of nowhere, without any indication. And guess what, this is exactly when you start to experience life and get to learn some of the best lessons of your lifetime.
There is nothing wrong with planning. The problem is when you get so much into the future planning mode that you forget to experience that place where life happens, the present. The present, this moment now, is where life beautifully unfolds itself. Even when the future happens, it doesn’t happen as the future, but as a present. The more you are entangled into that future planning illusion, the more you are moving away from life. This illusion is such that even when you arrive in the future as per your plans, instead of living and experiencing that moment to the fullest you are busy again planning the next step. For example, when it comes to love and career, we tend to believe or again we are told that we should first be settled before we plan to settle down with our loved ones, therefore focusing first on building a life and then focusing on finding the perfect partner. I am sure you can relate to this or have heard this before.
But what most fail to understand is that life doesn’t always come to us as we planned. There is a flow in which life happens and we are always in that flow of life. While being in that flow, if life presents to us love, rather than waiting to have an amazing career, accept that love. If the love is true, it will stay with you irrespective of your career. Similarly while being in the flow, if life presents to you a career, go for it. This is how we are meant to live our lives, by accepting what comes our way and dealing with it in the best possible way.
Anxiety and stress are simply by-products of us not living in the present, but being stuck in the past, or living in the future. Agreed we need to have some kind of planning. But don’t make your plan stone rigid. Use it simply as guidelines. What’s important is to know how to view and live life when life presents you people, opportunities and situations, because life is never stuck in the past, or rushes to the future. It respects the flow and comes when it has to come. The more we align ourselves with that flow, neither being slow nor being fast, the closer we are to bliss and inner peace.