Monday, April 27, 2015

Guest Blog: When the Cat Pukes on Your Planner

My first guest blogger for this series is Dawn Paoletta. I am grateful for her time in putting this post together and being willing to share of herself on my blog. Dawn's bio is at the end of this post. Enjoy!

-Amelia


I wake up, brew the coffee, feed the pets, and turn the corner into my Girl Cave known lovingly as the family office. In reality everyone knows it's mostly my territory. It is an unspoken understanding. You know how cats don't need to say anything but you know exactly where you stand with them at any given moment. It's like that. My planner sits on the desk, open, ready to assist me in the details of my well planned day. That's when I notice the brownish-grey spew covering my precious planning partner.

Source: Dawn Paoletta
Cat puke. Ugh! The cat hairball and accompanying liquid bleed through the pages of my life as I stare in disbelief. I prepare to assess the damage, and ponder the not so subtle implications of this divine feline message. The cat is nowhere to be found. Lucky for her.

We painstakingly plan our days, months, weeks and years. Sometimes it seems we spend just as much time planning as living. I used to believe that in Heaven, I would be a librarian. Until I realized I would rather be running the library, and the universe on most days, than actually accepting my small role in the daily scheme of things. Hence where my planner problems and frustrations begin.

Not only do I seek to squeeze too much into my day, I sometimes do the same with my planner. It's as if I want to squeeze my very life and the sum of it into my planner so I can have it with me, just in case. Just in case what? I have no idea, because none of us really knows all that is coming each day. We can plan for our days, and pray about each one, but in the end we must get on with the business of living and leave the rest in hands that are bigger than our own.

I have found that the things that have impacted me most in life have been unplanned...by me.

Whether the cat pukes on your planner or your just having one of "those" days, I've learned a thing or two from beyond the pages of my own planner I'd like to share with you. Consider these small lessons and tips while you plan your own days. I hope you find them useful for your own journey. I am still learning these lessons myself, because I tend to be a little thick in the head.  As for me next,  I'm going to find the cat.

1. Peace is found in stillness, not busyness. Take some time to be still in your day at some point. During this time, do NOT plan. Just allow yourself to sit, and ponder, reflect . In these moments of quietness you will gain insight into your own thoughts, feelings and insights. Sometimes we get so busy caring for the needs of others we forget to tune into ourselves. Don't make that mistake. A few jots into a gratitude journal, watching the birds outside, or just sitting quietly with a cup of tea can help open us up to the possibilities of what might be an overwhelming day, moment or situation.

 2. Abundance is found in simplicity, not excess. This is a humbling acknowledgement. Beware your own desire to gather. When we have so much we cannot find the one thing we need, we need to pause and consider releasing what we have to gain what we lack. All that means is, get rid of your junk! It might be overwhelming you now, but start small and begin releasing what is not beautiful, useful or necessary from your life. Give it away or throw it away but either way don't let anything stay that stifles your commitment to beauty, simplicity, and practicality as you see it.

3. Great Expectations are for life, not planners. A planner is a fancy task pad after all; it is not the Holy Grail. It does not have special powers, nor will it bring you good fortune, luck or peace. It  is what it is: a tool to assist you in organizing your thoughts, goals, tasks and obligations in a planned fashion. Guess what? Your plans, at best, are an estimated guess at what will happen in a day. Ideally. But, when ideal doesn't happen, all bets are off. Ultimately, proper perspective in our expectations toward planners, people and life will get us further than the details of any day.


BIO: Dawn Paoletta is a life enthusiast who loves to juggle words, chug coffee, and journal excessively. You can find her gathering stones on the beach most mornings. She loves hanging out with her hubby, daughter and family pets close to home in the smallest state in the US: Rhode Island. She blogs and shares her passion, poetry and prose @Enthusiastically, Dawn