What, what, what. That’s the way of the planning world. Now that the old year has passed, the new year beckons. As do the questions:
What are you doing this year? What are your plans? What do you want to do? What do you want to accomplish? What do you hope to succeed at – or survive – this year?
Here are a few tips I learned – and applied – during nearly-half-my-life of homeschooling that can help anyone during any season of life, whimsical or non.
Using Planners with Eyes of Solely Doing
If we use our planners with eyes of solely doing, at the end of the year we will be able to look back at our to do lists and see lines drawn through, or checkmarks beside, our many completed activities.
But we may also wonder, Why did I spend my time doing that?
We can’t change the past, but we can plan ahead.
Looking ahead to a new season, whether it be calendar mandated or life change motivated, we have the opportunity to ask ourselves:
“Why are we doing this year?”
The beauty of another day, another year is that we can ponder and pray, we can tweak and repent.
“Whats” are generally planner deep, while “whys” scrape the surface and get to follow-through depth.
The privacy of a secret place of pondering allows us to go deeper with two we can trust, one of them all the time and one yet sporadically: God and ourselves (although we tend to get the order mixed around in daily application – are you with me on that one? ).
Using Planners to Jumpstart the Year with Why
While we plan what will be doing, let’s also ask:
- Why am I doing this?
- What are my reasons for choosing this particular activity?
When we have the “why” fairly settled (I don’t think I’ve ever been 100% why-knowing), our “what” will be more focused, more stalwart against the forces of untimely rabbit trails, and more clearly defining who we are by what we are doing.
To Tell the Truth: A Rabbit Trail Confession Plan
My next set of plans are more focused than last year’s Year of Whimsy, but I’m still leaving room for a little whimsy.
That’s the what, but why?
Simply put, I really do like to follow hopping bunnies of curiosity.
So, I’m keeping my schedule open to a few hours a week of roaming the figurative forests in welcomed, in-season rabbit trailing.
Mapping the Main Path While Enjoying Bunny Trails
The main path will still be my main path.
To help my curiosity-fed wandering nature, I’m making a map and sticking to it by God’s grace (barring unforeseen changes to life and limb).
By writing down my goals (I’m typing them in Evernote this year), jotting a few whys by the whats, I’ll be able to keep my Whats and Whys close by.
Why? Because as much as I love bunnies, I don’t want to get too far off the main trail.
It’s Your Turn
- Make a List of Whats.
- Jot your Whys next to your Whats.
- If you can’t think of a good Why for a What, begin a To Be Considered List.
Having your own list of Whats and Whys will help keep others’ bunny trails from becoming your own.
What are you doing this year? Do you know why?
P.S. Evernote is such a helpful tool – and so easy to start using – I included a referral link. The basic version, which is what I have, is totally free. For full disclosure, they have a points reward system, and like bunny trails, I like rewards.