The Only Way To Stay On Track

The Only Way To Stay On Track

That is how I planned for our Thanksgiving feast. Yes, it is old-school paper and pencil, but it worked. The right column is the menu, how each food item is prepared, the time it will take and the temperature needed. The left column is the critical “timing” plan.

Was it perfect?

Nope. You will notice that nowhere does it list “trigger smoke detector–not once, but twice”. It doesn’t tell me to use “bread dough that won’t rise” or “under cook the pecan pie.”

But it all turned out! The smoke alarms were noisy and annoying, but didn’t do any damage, because in both cases they happened when I not as busy as at other times. The bread didn’t rise because (as I discovered later) I mis-measured my water by about 10% which is just enough to prevent good yeast activity. And the pecan pie? That truly was unfortunate, because it is a really good pie. However, I still had a perfect pumpkin pie so all was not lost!

That’s how I plan for a party. 

And that’s just for something as fleeting as a party. What about life after the party?

Do you plan your life? 

Do you know what are you going to do this week? This month? This year?

Are you making progress toward your goals every day?

Is your plan written down? Is it detailed, showing you all the necessary steps? 

Do you set a timetable?

If you tend to “wing it” through life, are you as successful as you want?

But back to festivities! Next up for parties: we host the neighborhood holiday bash on December 20th, followed by the Christmas Eve brunch for the family. More planning! More excitement! Fewer smoke alarms!

2 thoughts on “The Only Way To Stay On Track

  1. Lists are my lifeline! I make them constantly, and yes, I like the paper ones best: I make a little open square as a ‘bullet’ at the start of each item so I can physically mark the X that tells me I accomplished something when it’s done. Amazing, how satisfying it is to make those two little lines of an X!

    No, they don’t prevent missteps. I confess I went you one better and had *two* smoke alarm episodes in the two weeks prior to T-day, so before I put the turkey in the oven I was a Bad Citizen and disabled the smoke alarm nearest the oven! The turkey survived, the oven survived, the alarm survived, and we did too. πŸ˜‰

    The one thing lists *aren’t* good for, as you so wisely note above, is making sure we *do* the stuff on them, let alone do them well or in a timely fashion. The latter is one of the biggest stumbling blocks for many, and especially for me, so I think I may do a bit of experimenting with creating deadlines for myself when it comes to bigger things than remembering all the items that should go on my Thanksgiving table. Thanks for the inspiration to do that!


    • Kathryn, what a wonderful response! I am glad that you were prepared for T-day and thanks for showing that I am not alone in my list obsession! Thanks for reading and stay powerful and focused!

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