Change of plans. Being open to uncertainty.

I schedule everything.  I mean everything.  My exercise, my plane flights, my meals, my doctor’s appointments.  Ever since my phone was synced up to my Outlook calendar, I make sure everything is scheduled.  The problem?  Inevitably something changes.  It’s like Uncertainty is the new Black.  It’s ubiquitous.

I have to say I am more flexible now.  I used to feel as though I was out of control.  If there was restaurant I wanted to go to that was closed on Sundays – Grrr frustration.   No one wants to watch the movie I just purchased?   Well, I’ll just make them like it (and watch it).  But now I am much more open.  More resilient.   I bob and weave and take on whatever comes my way.

uncertainty is the new black

As I reflect, I realize why I am able to rise to the challenge.  I had the privilege to have Paul McGinniss as a trainer for my coach training at the Neuroleadership  Group some four years ago.  I can remember vividly that when he was working with someone and they hadn’t follow through saying “No sweat.”  For me, saying “No sweat” is letting go and moving forward.   No value judgment.  Just acknowledging what wasn’t done, and move on.

Here is what I’ve learned:

  • Shrug off disappointment. I recently purchased tickets to Cirque du Soleil for my daughter’s birthday.  About a week before the performance, they canceled the performance.  My reaction was disappointment but it was only temporary.  I didn’t dwell on it.  Oh well.  Move on.  She came home that weekend instead.  It was much more chill and everything worked out great.  Don’t dwell on the disappointment.  So if you don’t get that client or land the big contract.  Oh well. Do something else.
  • Be realistic. I flew to Orlando last week and had arranged for my son to drive up from Miami to meet me.  I hadn’t looked at how far that drive was.  It’s 4 hours.   So I was expecting him to drive 8 hours in one day just to see his mother.   Did I mention he’s in his final weeks of his junior year in college?    He made a prudent decision to not drive to Orlando since he couldn’t spend the night.  Make sure you set realistic expectations or you will be disappointed.
  • Plan B. The good news is that my son proposed a Plan B.   What if we met half way?  Pretty soon he found a few coffee shops and a Colombian restaurant about halfway in between.  2 hours for him and 2 hours for me.  Lunch?  Let’s do it.  So we ended up meeting at this Colombia restaurant in Port St. Lucie halfway up the Florida  It was wonderful.  Be open to plan B.
  • Be in the moment. I practice meditation every day.  I have consistently done this for the last 4 years.  I am more resilient.  I can step behind the waterfall and let small disruptions roll on by.  I’m not saying I never get ticked off or disappointed but I am much more able to keep my reaction more of a response instead of overreacting.  I credit that to my meditation practice.  This can be accomplished through other practices that bring you back into your body and out of your head like yoga, running, walking or playing an instrument.
  • Don’t be attached to the details. I knew I wanted to see my son when I was in Florida.  I had looked up things to do in Orlando for that day.  Universal?  Disney?  Movie?  Nope. Nope and nope.  Lunch with my son in a Colombian restaurant (one of our favorite cuisines) was perfect.  The only detail I was attached to was seeing my son.
  • Keep your eye on the prize. What is your purpose?  Sometimes I have a client that seems to be going off the rails and  I just need to be present and focus on what they need.   I know my purpose it to be of service.   My purpose is to make a difference in people’s lives.  The details of getting there is up to the client.  No agenda.  Just service.  Keep your eye on your purpose and you will get there to.


Change of plans?  No sweat. Move on.

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