Ever plan your week, do all the work, and get all the things checked off only to find that your plan isn’t really getting you where you want to go? I understand. As a wife and mom who homeschools and works from home, I take part of my Sunday evening to plan the upcoming week. Still, I sometimes get to the end of the week and find that my plan didn’t work, that it was a really difficult week.
Difficult weeks can occasionally happen all on their own no matter how well we’ve planned. Sometimes there is something that comes up unexpectedly, and sometimes plans go off the rails. However, if you find yourself consistently struggling with bad weeks, there are some questions you can ask yourself to see what is going on in your planning life.
Reflect On The Good
First thing, ask yourself what about the previous week went well? Which things did work out? Was your decision to say no to an activity a good idea? It can be easy to overlook and forget all the small victories that occurred during the week, but they help encourage us to keep planning the week ahead.
As you’re reflecting, take a few minutes to jot down a few of the bigger things that happened. Remind yourself what went well. What did you do well or what worked well for the family? Look back through your photos from the past week and savor the happy moments. Use the highlights of the previous week to give you some direction for the upcoming week.
Take the moments that went well and see if they can be repeated. Is that activity something that you can try again? Did something work so well that you want to make it part of your regular routine and habit for your family or for yourself as an individual? Even if it was a hard week, chances are something went according to plan. Keep those moments to encourage and center yourself.
Assess What Was Hard
Now it’s time to start thinking about what didn’t go so well. What was hard? Where can you improve? Oftentimes the weekend gets hectic, and we don’t make time to plan well for the week ahead. It can be easy to overlook something and forget to add it to the schedule. Look for the places you could do better and where you could add safeguards in the week to help make it run more smoothly.
Looking at what can be improved doesn’t mean you need to beat yourself up. You’re not a robot who exists to check boxes. However, understanding where things got off track can help you avoid consistently getting to the end of the week and wondering why your plan isn’t working.
Plans Need Perspective
Reflection and making adjustments are part of the planning routine. That’s why it’s important to ask yourself these two questions to discover why the effort you are putting into your plan might not be working. Look for the patterns of things that went well that you can do regularly. Then be honest with yourself about what didn’t go well.
You want to make intentional and strategic plans so that you can get to the end of the majority of your weeks feeling like you’ve done something to move towards where you want to go in life. Your plans should be in alignment with the things that you care about as a person and the things your family cares about. This might mean dropping something from your schedule to enjoy a little more freedom and flexibility instead of having a hyper-scheduled week.
I hope answering these two questions will be helpful for you as you plan your weeks and that you don’t often get to the end of the week wondering why your plan isn’t working. Be sure to leave a comment with any tips you have for dealing with those times your plan isn’t working.