Why I’m trying to plan less


I’ve always been a planner. I like nothing more than sitting down with a blank diary and thinking about all the things I could do over the coming months. My brain gets going, my planning juices start flowing and before I know it I’m messaging friends, booking in dates, planning holidays, researching routes, buying tickets and finding restaurants. It would be fair to say this is my idea of a dream afternoon.

But in recent months, it seems the planning is more fun than the event itself. I could spend hours planning for a party or a dinner or even a holiday, and by the time it comes round I’m like: “Not really sure I fancy this. Maybe I’ll stay at home.” But what do I want to do when I’m home? Why, I want to plan more events of course!

I think part of this is because of my tendency to feel anxious. I plan something amazing, then imagine all the things that could go wrong and it’s just too much pressure so it’s easier to not go in the first place. Even if nothing goes wrong, let’s face it, I’m bound to have said something ridiculous that will keep me awake until the early hours as I chew it over and over in my mind.

But I can’t blame anxiety for everything. At the heart of it is the fact that, quite simply, I’m lazy. I like to be at home in my pyjamas, eating cake and drinking tea and living vicariously through the internet – planning for all the things I may never do. Often leaving the house ends up being brilliant, but the thought of leaving the house is actually pretty hellish.

As part of my new year’s resolution to do less stuff, I’ve decided that I will only do the things I *really* want to do. When someone says, “Oh, we should do something soon,” I will not be the person to respond with a list of possible plans, optional dates and a range of locations. Instead, I’ll say, “Yeah definitely. Let me know what you fancy.”

That, ladies and gentlemen, is guaranteed to more than half the things I do in an average year. It will automatically mean I do less stuff. I will have more time at weekends, time to lie in and eat brunch and read books and do all the things I said I should on for a restful day.

And what will I do on the days I’m at home? Well I’ll plan stuff, of course. But in 2016 planning stuff does not mean doing stuff. It’s just a way to pass the time… and I like that.