It’s the last week of January, which means just about everyone’s New Years resolutions are forgotten. Gyms have emptied out, restaurants have removed their healthy menu options, and budgets sit on computers never to be touched again. How did the hope of 2020 fade so quickly? For many, it was because their life change was built on the fallacy of normalcy.
I find it incredibly easy to sit down at my desk and write a vision for my ideal week. We’ll spend Monday cleaning, go on an adventure on Tuesday, visit the library and park on Wednesday, and so on. Having a plan is excellent, but what happens when I wake up on Monday morning to two sick kids? Eh, I’ll do my ideal week next Monday when things are perfect again.
That’s the trap.
Normal isn’t perfect. There’s no perfect week, ideal budget, or flawless workout plan. All of the things that we want to do happen within the context of life. Life is messy. Kids will be sick, your boss will put you in a bad mood, you’ll have to take an unexpected trip, you’ll get a bad night’s sleep, there will be an unexpected expense, you and your wife will fight, and someone will total your car while you’re trying to start a new business. Plans are upended almost as soon as they’re set.
Despite the waves of life, plans must be made. If you don’t plan to live a healthier life, or build a more robust interior life, or spend more time playing with your kids, you absolutely won’t do any of those things. You have to plan when you’d like to go for a walk, but be okay rescheduling for a different time during the day. You have to plan to pray, but be okay with changing the format when you grow bored and restless. You have to plan to play with your kids, even if you play in different ways with different groupings at different times.
If you can only build the better version of yourself when things are normal, that better version will always be out of reach. Get the work done, even if it’s imperfect and even if it’s not on schedule.