How’s That Planning Thing Going for You? – Richard’s Commentary

We are on the last leg of our journey to the south, visiting family and friends all the way from Maryland to the “main event” in Orlando, Florida and back again. Today we are leaving Raleigh, North Carolina where we have spent some time with second son’s family, to head home and plunge right back into our “normal” lives. In fact we arrive just in time to lead our Consciousness Exploration Group scheduled for the first Wednesday of every month.

It has been a “busy” trip with one-night stands in several places as we drove south. Planning and coordination was key to keep us relatively on track to get from place to place. The trip has gone really well. And I expect our last leg will go well.

We did get a little tangled up in navigating between Orlando and the Amrit Yoga Ashram, where we spent a delightful time with our nephew. Our Google Maps were not in complete agreement with our GPS guidance and we made some wrong turns on the toll roads. We spent a couple extra dollars backtracking, and, yes, my reaction was anger and frustration. I failed to take the advice Rosemary offered in her Exploration post:

Event happens.  Then you React.  And then you CHOOSE how you will respond.

Event (Plan seems to go awry).  What is your REACTION?  Anger?  Upset? Depression? Denial? So many different emotions can arise and they can stem from previous experiences, even from your childhood.  Reactions start at the unconscious level. But your RESPONSE is chosen consciously.

The key here is choice. The initial reaction is OK; we all react to missteps, to little, and big mistakes, to detours in life that annoy. It is the next step that matters. It is the conscious pause to move into our higher brain and consider an appropriate response, choose that response and act.

The second key is to work on shortening the time from reaction to chosen appropriate response. This seems to be the main work of my lifetime. My primary lesson is patience; and I get many opportunities to practice! Highway detours are just an example.

We will likely need to change our plans for visiting our new grandson in California. We had planned to go out for second son’s birthday, a few weeks after planned birth of Tristan. Son’s plans went into a sharp detour when Tristan decided to come into the world three and a half weeks early! Sometimes other people’s choices affect our plans!

Son Andrew seems to have handled this big change in his plans relatively well. He and Mom are home now and Tristan will follow soon when he is eating well and gaining a bit of weight (he was four and a half pounds at birth).

Of course we are easy with this change in plans; it means we get to see him that much sooner! We have to rearrange some scheduled events and reschedule the trip; fortunately we had not yet made flight reservations.

Some detours are good, even wonderful. This is what Rosemary means by “this or something better.” The best plans include this line!

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