I have always been a planner. Always looking ahead. When I was in high school, I knew exactly what I wanted to be when I grew up. I went to college and graduated as planned. I planned the same way for marriage and my family. All in all, I am blessed with a wonderful life and I am very grateful. All my planning has paid off.
However, lately, I have become very aware of a downside of being a major planner. I have the tendency of always looking ahead. Yes, this would be planning. When a person always looks ahead, they often fail to focus on what is right in front of them.
This year my oldest child graduates from high school. My youngest is moving onto middle school. Another starts high school. The fourth is going to be a junior in high school. What happened to those chubby-cheeked kids who held my hand as we walked to the library? The little boys who were fascinated with the construction site down the street from my home? The little girl who had me rewind the Barbie in the 12 Dancing Princesses movie so she could dance along? They are all growing up and soon my house will be quiet and I’ll be forced to plan for the next stage.
But I don’t want to rush ahead. I want to cherish now. I have been consciously drinking up moments, realizing all we truly have is here and now, what is right in front of us. Last night when my youngest and I finished watching an episode of Bones—our nightly ritual—I kissed her head and smelled her clean hair. I watched the smile form on her lips when I responded, “yes” to her request to hang out with her for a few more minutes. My sweet precious girl.
This is just one example of how I have been training myself to live in the now.
Don’t get me wrong. There is nothing wrong with planning. I owe the life I have built to good planning and God’s blessings. But I need to focus on the now, too. To stop worrying. To stop looking so far down the road.
Oh, but a planner’s ways are hard to change. I am currently working on revisions for my next Harlequin Love Inspired Suspense while also worrying about my next proposal, my next contract, my next deadline. Hadn’t I worked hard to become a published author? Shouldn’t I cherish the moment? Trust that God’s plans are greater than mine.
Entrust your works to the Lord, and your plans will succeed. (Proverbs 16:3)
The human heart plans the way but the Lord directs the steps. (Proverbs 16:9)
Are you a planner? What are some of the pros and cons of always looking to the future? I’d love to hear from you. I can also be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/AlisonStoneAuthor. My website is www.AlisonStone.com.
Alison Stone’s Bio:
Alison Stone left Buffalo, New York and headed a thousand miles south to earn an industrial engineering degree at Georgia Tech in Hotlanta. Go Yellow Jackets! She loved the South, but true love brought her back North.
After the birth of her second child, Alison left Corporate America for full-time motherhood. She credits an advertisement for writing children’s books for sparking her interest in writing. She never did complete a children’s book, but she did have success writing articles for local publications before finding her true calling, writing romantic suspense.
Alison lives in Western New York with her husband of twenty years and their four children where the summers are absolutely gorgeous and the winters are perfect for curling up with a good book–or writing one.
Besides writing, Alison keeps busy volunteering at her children’s schools, driving her girls to dance, and watching her boys race motocross.
Latest release from Harlequin Love Inspired Suspense (inspirational fiction):
Critical Diagnosis blurb:
HER PERSONAL PROTECTOR
Researcher Dr. Lily McAllister has dedicated her life to finding a cure for a family disease and now, steps away from a promising new treatment, Lily is attacked. Only the training of army physician James O’Reilly can save her. As the would-be CEO of his family’s pharmaceutical company, James’s secret dream is to reenlist. But he can’t leave Lily with a bull’s-eye on her back. Nor can he stay and stop her from pursuing her goal. No one can, including the stalker who shadows her every move. Still, James has lost too many people he’s loved—and this time he refuses to lose Lily.