When Life Doesn’t Go According to Plan

    30 November 2018

    Achieve your goals. Chart your course. Define your destiny. We hear these admonitions all the time. But what do we do when our plans don’t work out?

    We have the agency to make our lives great. But what does that mean? That we can map out a plan and then simply follow the steps? The problem is that we don’t always know what is ahead of us. When things don’t happen the way we hoped or expected, we might end up feeling frustrated, angry, or confused.

    But this isn’t to say that we shouldn’t make plans. We are responsible for what we can control. And when we encounter difficulties, God will help us through. Here are a few tips on how we can make the most of our circumstances.

    Set standards before setting goals.

    Living a full, rich life comes from knowing who we are. What we believe can inform our personal standards. Our knowledge of our identity as children of God can help us set standards that will lead to worthy goals. For example, focusing on a standard of integrity can make it easier to set and accomplish goals such as finishing night school or university or improving work skills. We don’t have to be perfect at reaching our goals, but we can try our best to progress.

    Surrender to God, and conquer fear of change.

    Here is what we know: God has a plan for each of us. We just have to be willing to hear His voice and accept His will. We can follow His plan for us when we view life from a broader perspective, when we see uncertainty as an experience to learn from, and when we understand that change brings new opportunities. When we learn to embrace life as a gift from God, we begin to enjoy each surprising moment and feel gratitude for the ability to expand our vision and capacities.

    Find growth in failure.

    Sometimes things don’t work out for a reason, or sometimes they just don’t work out. Either way, we can search for a lesson to learn from each failure. Nothing is really a failure if we learn from it. As we grow, lesson by lesson, we will be more satisfied with who we are and more confident moving forward.

    Even though there will be challenges outside of our control, we can choose to live to our best, trust God during times of change, and learn from our mistakes. Making these choices will help us stay grounded, even when life doesn’t go according to plan.