When your best-laid plans fail
So your day went sideways…
Hey there —
Yesterday, you created a grand aspirational plan for a perfect, productive morning. 🗒️
⏰ Wake up at 6 a.m.
🧘 Meditate for 10 minutes
⌨️ Add 1,000 words to your novel
🍎 Eat a healthy breakfast
💼 Start work
Then your alarm went off and…it all went up in flames from there. 🔥
You hit snooze. Twice.
You thought you’d spend just one minute on Instagram…only to look up from your phone 20 minutes later.
The cat hacked up a hairball in the middle of your yoga mat.
You finished your writing time with only 500 words.
You turned on the shower to discover no hot water.
After all that you said “screw it” and went with a donut for breakfast. (But at least you started work only ten minutes late...yay?)
It turns out that as humans, we’re really good at being just a little too confident in our plans.
It’s no wonder so many of us have experienced the pain of staring at the ashes of our best-laid plans. (Though hopefully it doesn’t always go quite as badly as the example above.) 😬
This isn’t to say we should never make plans. Intentions and aspirations are great. When done right, they’re what keep us motivated and moving toward the things — and the life — we want.
But when we fail to follow through with those intentions (or something gets in the way), it’s all too easy to wallow in shame or disappointment.
We beat ourselves up for not being as dedicated or self-controlled as we think we should be. Or we spend the rest of the day in a grumpy funk (which isn’t fun for us or those around us).
So what can you do to resist or recover from this spiral of negativity when your plans fall apart?
Instead of bemoaning what you may (or may not) have had control over, stop and ask yourself:
Is this a moment I can salvage, or a moment I need to release?
🏗️ Salvage. If there’s something you can do to achieve partial success — even if you don’t quite reach the goal you were originally aiming for — do it! Celebrate what you did accomplish instead of fixating on what you didn’t. And if you set your sights too high and need to be more realistic, consider how you can adjust your plans (or your expectations) in the future.
🤲 Release. We’re humans. Despite our best efforts, we all drop the ball sometimes. Other times, our goals are totally attainable, but life just…happens. When there’s nothing you can do about a day gone awry, it’s time to compassionately acknowledge your disappointment — and then do your best to move forward.
When your aspirations don’t live up to reality, it doesn’t have to derail your day — or your progress. Take steps to pivot and find a win, or accept the things you couldn’t control and try again.
Today might not have gone perfectly according to plan, but tomorrow is full of potential. ☀️
How to log off
by Rhiannon Williams
In both our work hours and our downtime, most of us are tethered to our devices. And as journalist Rhiannon Williams points out, this doesn’t always make us feel bad…but it doesn’t always feel great either.
In her quest to forge a happier relationship with the internet, Williams spoke with some experts to create a mini-guide for how to log off.
Check it out to determine whether you actually need a total digital detox (it turns out we shouldn’t just assume the answer is “yes”), and learn how to create better boundaries to avoid doomscrolling malaise.
Emptying out my brain before bed
by Ellie Middleton
Ever laid awake at night because your brain felt as crammed full of stuff as the junk drawer in your kitchen?
In this TikTok, neurodivergent content creator, speaker, writer, and consultant Ellie Middleton outlines her quick 3-step process for emptying her brain before bed. 🧠
Middleton shares this as one of her many ADHD hacks, but you don’t have to be neurodivergent to benefit from this strategy for clearing and quieting your mind before your head hits the pillow.
FriXion erasable pens
by Pilot Pen
Just because the slow growth mindset ditches the pressure of perfection doesn’t mean we don’t correct our mistakes (or that our ideas don’t ever need editing!). 🖊️
If you’re an analog note-taker or journaler who prefers the look and feel of writing in ink, but who also appreciates the flexibility of correctable pencil — the FriXion line of erasable pens could be your next office supply obsession.
One word of caution: The secret lies in the pen’s thermo-sensitive ink which turns transparent under heat — meaning if you leave your notebook in a hot car, it could affect your scribbles. (But you can bring them back by putting the notebook in your freezer. Science!)
Learn more and see the pens in action in the review linked below!
🎙️ Learn how to live an unoptimized life (and question the assumptions we often make about success and happiness) with Derek Sivers recent conversation on The Tim Ferriss Show.
🎧 While you’ve got your headphones on, chill out to the sultry sounds and poetic lyrics of boygenius.
📚 Outlive: The Science and Art of Longevity by Peter Attia aims to help you live longer — and better — with helpful strategies and tactics for maintaining your health as you age.
📺 The Office meets The Truman Show in the new documentary-style comedy Jury Duty, where the lead character has no idea that everyone else in the court is a paid actor.
Written by Ashley Martin
Edited by Matt D'Avella