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Steal My Master Planning Plan

by bevbarnes on January 3, 2013

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I have to admit.  I’m not a great planner.  Planning stresses me out.  My Myers Briggs type preference is ENFP.  The significant part of my type preference when it comes to planning is the final “P”. In the planning world, what this means is I’m more comfortable BEFORE the plans are made – when all the options are still open.

Those with a final letter “J”are more comfortable when things are decided.  They are the planning Kings and Queens.  Not that they make better plans – they might miss a last minute detail that the languishing P’s could insert into the plan at the last minute.  J’s like planning and P’s avoid it.

For us P’s planning is anxiety filled.  What if I don’t want to do what I planned to do?  What if I make the wrong decision?  What if I don’t have enough information?  What if the world ends and I can’t do it (last year’s doubt)?

So New Year’s Resolutions (i.e. plans) can become a problem.

Think about what it’s like to pack for a trip.  P’s like to bring clothes for every weather possibility and also options just in case they don’t feel like wearing what they brought.  (My husband the J packs two weeks before we leave for anywhere we are going.)

I’ve come up with a Master Planning Plan to help me get past my planning demons.  If you get anxious when you plan, these tips might help with your anxiety and therefore with your plans.

1.  You aren’t doing it alone.

Remember this.   You are guided by invisible forces in the universe.  You just have to take one tiny step and you’ll get help that you didn’t even imagine would show up.  Making the commitment to move closer to the life that is right for you ALWAYS brings out magic helpers.  One hundred percent of my clients have stories of “luck” and happenstance as soon as they leap into the void.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe wrote:

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back– Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth that ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.”

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.

2.  Tap into Love. 

Decide that your plans are only going to involve what you love – doing more of what you love and less of what you don’t love.  Its way easier to make plans that are filled with love.  If your plans involve something you “should” do rather than something that fills you with delight, then it’s not a good plan.  Use your heart not your mind to plan.

3.  Remember that you can change your mind.

When I realized that I didn’t have to do something just because I had committed to it, it rocked my world.  As Oprah Winfrey via Maya Angelou says:

“When you know better, you do better.”

When you plan something way in advance, you’ll have no clue if it’s right for you.  If at some point it becomes clear that you don’t want to finish your Phd.  You don’t have to.

4.  Get out of your verbal mind.

To drop anxiety and find peace, drop out of your verbal mind.  You’ll find peace which can’t exist alongside anxiety – and you’ll get divine inspiration.  Here are a few things you can do access your non-verbal mind.

  •  First thing in the morning, right away when you wake up, while you are still in bed, centre yourself by taking 10 deep belly breathes.  Connect to YOU before you start going and doing.
  • Go outside regularly.  Instead of sitting down to plan on New Year’s Day I went snowshoeing and took the picture above.  You don’t have to snowshoe.  Do something physical or creative that uses your hands.  Take photographs as you walk – search for birds or specific colours.  This activity will shift your focus out of your verbal mind.
  • Listen to music that you love.  Dance.  Paint.  Create.

5.  Let the Universe plan for you.

When an idea shows up out of the blue after you have been playing outside or out of your verbal mind, accept it as a plan no matter what.  Don’t analyze it or think about it, just accept the gift that the Universe has given to you and plan on doing it.

Doing without doing.  It’s how you find peace.  It’s how you drop anxiety.   It’s how you get ideas.  It’s how you can create a plan even if your Myers Briggs type preference ends with the dreaded “P”.   These are all part of my master planning plan this year, and it’s yours to steal.  If you’ve not done the Myers Briggs Type Inventory (MBTI), you can get some basic information here.  You can take the MBTI here.

I LOVE hearing from you.  Share on the blog what helps YOU to plan particularly if planning is not your natural preference.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Sonia January 3, 2013 at 5:37 pm

Thank you for this post, Bev! Now, I know why I’m not a Queen of planning!!! With your tips, I’ll be able to get my own Master Planning Plan and see my life agenda going better. I’ll start working on my “P” right away… 😉


Bev Barnes January 3, 2013 at 7:22 pm

You are very welcome Sonia. Even if planning isn’t your natural preference you can get around it by “planning” to do the things you love. Magically, this is all you have to do to find your “right” life. Don’t forget to listen to your inspirations, the idea that show’s up that you don’t have to force. I think that listening to those ideas are the ONLY way I can plan. Happy New Year!!!


noreen January 4, 2013 at 3:26 pm

Bev – I giggled at your description of packing. That is so me – I bring way more than I need because who knows what I’ll feel like wearing/doing — and all the night before/morning that I’m leaving. As always, your words of wisdom come at a key moment for me. Your steps all resonated with me and served as a reminder for me to relax, commit, and let love lead me. Thank you!


Bev Barnes January 4, 2013 at 4:04 pm

I love that Noreen. Worth repeating: Relax, commit and let love lead me. Thanks for sharing and it’s so great to hear from you!


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