Systems, routines and schedules.
My entire life runs on them.
I’m an INTJ so seeing systems and how they function and can make things more efficient and productive is something that comes naturally to me.
And up until recently, I had a lot of ‘manuals’ for all the people in my life – parents, friends, coworkers, even the store clerk at Trader Joe’s. There was a specific way I wanted all of these people to show up and function within my life narrative.
You know what doesn’t come naturally to me, spontaneity, living in the moment, going off script. It terrifies me.
One of the longest and loudest shouting matches of my life came when the airline booked for our honeymoon suddenly went out of business two months before our wedding and we couldn’t get our money back. It was not a pretty moment for me. My mom had to step in because I was too emotionally wrapped up in the picture of the perfect honeymoon to think logically or rationally or even calmly. She handled the situation in 20 minutes (I should let you know that she’s a miracle worker when it comes to travel snafus).
I tell you all of this to let you know that when the plan deviates from what was intended, I used to get super uncomfortable and highly irritated. I could see the interworkings of a system and if the plan went off course, it meant the system had broken on some level.
But life isn’t so black-and-white. Humans are involved. Emotions are involved. The universe is involved.
So how did I get the courage to burn those manuals for everyone?
A lot of letting go of expectations of what should be.
Finding someone in my life who’s my opposite.
My husband lives in the moment. He likes risk and adventure and going with the flow.
He even convinces me to have breakfast in bed with hundreds of strangers.
Being around him has helped me to break out of my comfort zone. And see that not having a plan can be just as fun.
I’ve known this amazing, inspirational man for over half my life. And it always astounds me how much I continue to learn from his carefree spirit.
Finding a trusted confidant that isn’t my copy or exact double, but more my opposite has made all the difference in becoming a more well-rounded human that is accepting of the twists and turns of life and business and relationships.
Looking for a yin to your yang?
Think about the facets of your personality that you’d like to express more.
Do you want to be more courageous? Would you like to put yourself out there more frequently? Or maybe you’d like to give back to your community more?
Is there a trusted someone in your life like that? Seek to spend more time in their presence.
The qualities you seek to bring out will emerge once you put attention to it.
Ps. How did I know this is all true? Because like my experience of finding comfort in going without a plan, my husband has become a bit of a planner in some areas of his life too.