Monday, August 15, 2011

On Planning

Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.
-John Lennon
You know what John Lennon? You and your pseudo philosophical quotes can suck it.

I cannot tell you how many times this particular Lennon-ism has been quoted to me. In fact it’s been quoted to me so many times that if someone does have the nerve to say it to me I might have to take some anger management classes due to the fact that I punched their face in. JUST KIDDING. I do not have anger management issues. But seriously, that quote, while having some truth behind it, is a misstatement. Every person who has quoted it to me has said it in a negative light.

Planning is good. Planning is smart. Planning implies that you are driven, ambitious, calculative, and determined. All fine qualities of a dictator productive human being. I like to make plans because it gives me something to work towards. For instance, I plan on working in an evolving workplace that is fast paced and exciting. Now I’m going to plan on making good grades so that I can get into a good college. Now I’m going to plan on making good grades in college as well as lifelong connections so that I can achieve my goal of having an awesome job.

See? Was that painful? No not at all. Did I miss anything fun in the process? No not at all.

Small term planning is also good. Planning a time to study not only makes homework easier to digest, but allows you to be prepared in time for class (not that I study like I should). Planning to hang out with friends over the weekend not only gives you something to look forward to, but gives you the opportunity to use your time wisely (as opposed to watching tv waiting for a friend to randomly text you).

For me, planning is my security blanket. My inner neurotic control freak likes knowing the details of something so that I can avoid disastrous situations. Knowing things ahead of time also gives me enough time to think of a plan B, just in case plan A fails. Like I said, it makes me feel safe.

Here are two people that quoted Lennon and ended up looking stupid:

1. Sophomore year debate coach: When I stated that my weekend was already “planned out” he sagely spouted the Lennon quote to me, and then went further mocking the fact that I used a planner and liked to map details out ahead of time in front of the entire class (which was composed of 10 guys and one other girl besides me). WELL GUESS WHAT. He should have planned on buying/using a condom because he knocked up his ex, who he promptly moved in with (because he was also broke). At the end of the year due to the alarming amount of parent complaints he didn’t get his teaching contract renewed. The only reason I know all of this is because he also liked to talk about his personal life. Not to sound like a complete bitch, but I made his job HELL for the remainder of the year because he mocked my love of planning. I heard from one of his former theatre students that he is now driving commercial trucks (aka 18-wheelers). All that money for a teaching degree? SOUNDS LIKE SOMEONE COULD HAVE USED A PLAN.

2. Savvy. Let’s just call her that. Whenever we would talk about what we were going to do when we “grew up” she would mock me and my cookie cutter college-job-house-family plan. Often times she advised for me to go with the flow, and just not care about anything. One day she sent me the quote over Myspace (which I’m sure everyone has forgotten about) saying, “this made me think of u :P” Dearest Savvy, I’m glad I didn’t heed your advice because then I would be just like you and Sam (her bff): a single mom with a floundering baby daddy and crazy scary stretch marks. The thing with Savvy that bothered me is that before she was pregnant she would get drunk all the time, beg to borrow my homework, and still manage to flunk everything. Now that I think about it, she never really had any ambitions or goals. I think getting pregnant was the best thing that could have happened to her because now she does have to plan, and make responsible decisions for not only her, but her baby.

See? Bad things happen when you mock planning.

Sure, sometimes over planning can come off as neurotic, but I think it just shows that you care enough about your life, or the people in it that you’re willing to say, “Hey, you’re so important to me that I’m going to give you 2 precious hours that could have been used for work/studying/sleeping.”

Sorry. Yesterday someone told me that quote and I nearly spat my cranberry juice in their face and started yelling at them.


  1. YES! I concur completely. I love plans, I love planning, I love having a plan. No, it doesn't always work out, but hey, at least when the shit hits the fan I've thought of a way to unstick it. Just think of NASA, would they go without a plan? Hell no!

  2. I support your having a plan 100%. People who mock it may just deserve cranberry juice in their face.

  3. Planning is great I agree but I do feel bad for those people who ended up like that..but besides that I love the new layout!

  4. P.S. I totally saw that quote on Twitter just now and laughed :p

  5. I tend to plan everything meticulously, I get edgy if I'm not sure what I'm doing! I like to think of it as being an architect: you plan out something to detail and execute it to perfection. You couldn't do it any other way :)

  6. i HAVE to plan. all the time.

    loved the last line. :D

  7. Planning is nice, to an extent. I like to have a plan that puts everyone in the right place at the right time, with a few mile-markers along the way. I like to give room for spontaneity, but complete anarchy isn't really comfortable for anyone involved.

  8. I completely agree! I'm definitely the kind of person that needs to write things down, figure things out, make sense of things ahead of time in order for things to run smoothly. Sorry, but there's nothing fun about running around last minute like a nut trying to figure out what the heck is going on. Planning is great, so that quote can suck it, haha.

  9. Told you so, you should try a career as a writer ;) You're good with words! Hmm, you actually got me here. I don't really know whether planning's a good thing or not. Oh well, I think I'm somewhere in the middle. Haha!

  10. but if you plan all the time, your improvisational skills disappear