Here we go again, preparing for another BC adventure as we set out for the Sunshine Coast this weekend. It was a spur of the moment decision and wasn’t planned at all – something we do a lot more lately than we ever used to. Aside from planning our accommodations, we haven’t really planned much else for this trip. For us, it’s a fun way to see and do stuff; moreover, to experience things in a new way.
We used to plan everything. Our first big vacation together was to Hawaii, and every day was planned. Luau, Wedding, Honeymoon, Road to Hana, Haleakala, Big Island, etc. And pretty much every vacation we took thereafter seemed somewhat planned. Then life became planned. We planned to buy a house. Then we planned to renovate something. We planned to have people over for dinner. We planned to get a dog. We planned to go for certain walks with said dog at specific times and locations. We planned to move to Panama. As you can see, we planned a lot. And we still do – it’s inevitable.
Numerous motivations speakers will say you need goals in life, and it’s true. But to achieve those goals you kind of need a plan, Stan. You don’t just wake up one day and run a marathon (I could, I just don’t want to right now). But honestly, marathoners have a goal, but they also have a plan to reach that goal.
So how does a minimalist lifestyle require planning?
As mentioned in my Sell All Your Stuff books, you need to have a plan to help sell your stuff, otherwise you’ll just be unorganized, stressed out, and likely not get the full value for your stuff. The same goes for moving, retiring (hello – it’s why there are financial planners), and weddings to for that matter (in fact there’s a movie called the Wedding Planner which I’ll never see). And if/when you decide to declutter that closet, well, you might want to have a bit of a plan on what you’re going to do with all that extra stuff.
Do you have to plan all aspects of life to be a minimalist?
Heeeeeellll no! Our version of a minimalist lifestyle initially involved planning, and lots of it. But we fell into this lifestyle in didn’t plan on becoming “minimalists” either. In fact, we don’t even label ourselves “minimalist”, or “awesomeists” for that matter, even though we’re both. We were never big consumers, just planners. But having lived this lifestyle for three years we’ve noticed one big change – we don’t plan all aspects of vacations now.
Some of our most memorable vacation moments came without a plan, most recently our caving adventure on/in Vancouver Island. It wasn’t planned at all – a friend ping’d us about it and we went. Our bike ride through Medellin wasn’t planned, but it was an epic ride we’ll never forget!
Granted, there is often stuff we want to see when we go places, so we do make a plan to see them, but we also like to keep some time open for something a little more “spur of the moment”. Planning isn’t bad, it’s nice to have a plan, but sometimes it’s also nice to fly by the seat of your plans….after all, “best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry “.
Now go sell all your stuff – plan or no plan!