I would love to say that I am someone who appreciates every moment, lives for the day, and focuses on the present. But in reality, I do everything but this.
I am a compulsive planner. I can’t help it- everything in my life has to planned meticulously: what I’m doing, where I’m going, what I’m eating. My most used app on my phone is Notes, and every day I fill it with my plans for that day, the next day, and the day after that. I don’t know why I do it, I just know that if I don’t, I feel stressed, my brain feels almost ‘fuzzy’, and I find it hard to concentrate if I don’t have a plan in place. In this sense, my obsessive need to be organised is a good thing: it helps me stay calm, it means I’m never late for anything, and it means that I never really forget things.
BUT, on the flip side, it also means that I am never really focussing on the moment- I’m always looking forward, always thinking about what’s happening next, so much that I’ve realised that I’m not actually appreciating all of the little things that make life good on a day to day basis. I struggle to appreciate the moment, because I’m always thinking about the next one, rather than the one happening RIGHT NOW. Which is really the only one that matters.
The thing which inspired me to write this post was a video I shared on Facebook from Children in Need. It told the story of a family who lost their daughter to a rare genetic disorder, and then 2 years later lost their son to bone cancer. Whilst making me cry (I very rarely cry), the video also made me realise how important it is to focus on the present. Their story, aside from being unbelievably heart breaking, was also a very real reminder that no-one knows what is going to happen tomorrow. No matter how much planning I do, I can never predict what is going to happen. The horrific plane crash involving the Brazilian football team which happened on Monday night is another, very real, and very sad, example of this. We never know what is round the corner.
Whilst this is scary (especially to me-who likes to think that I can control everything), it has also made clear that I need to start focussing on all the good that’s in my life on a daily basis, instead of always thinking about what’s happening next. What I’m going to do tomorrow can be decided tomorrow- it’s what I’m doing right now that is important.
So, from now on, I am determined to start appreciating every day a little bit more. I’m not going to be able to give up planning completely (old habits die hard), but I am going try to focus on the present, and to go with the flow.
PS. I’ve just realised this post probably makes me sound like a psycho. I promise I’m not.