When Life Interrupts Your Plans: 4 Secrets to Remember

We’ve all been there, haven’t we?

We have our whole day set out. In fact, our whole week/month/year/life is set out! We know what’s supposed to happen. We’ve planned each detail. We know where we are headed.

And then. Life says, “Uh-uh. No way.” And it blocks your path.

Actually, forget that: it grabs you and drags you kicking and screaming down a new road.

Where did those beautiful plans of ours go?

For Me

I could share with you about two dozen different times this has happened to me. Sometimes it was something smaller, like having to graduate from college a semester late. Sometimes it was a life change that completely crumbled my view of the future. And sometime, I probably will tell you about these times.

But today? We’re just going to talk about a small issue.

I started back up my blog.

Yes! I was so excited and pumped! I had so much to share! So much to write! I wanted to build my blog quickly, so I was ready to churn out a dozen posts in a week.

And then… (You know the drill.)

I started two part-time jobs around the same time my blog launched. Suddenly, the days had a lot less hours in them. We had a busy weekend with my amazing children-by-marriage and spent time with family. It was wonderful … but blogging time bit the dust.

So I felt myself deflate a little. I hoped for so much more. I wanted to DO so much more. And then I couldn’t.

Can I still do this blog? I thought. Is it already time to throw in the towel? Can I keep up with it?

Pftt. Seriously, Katy? Seriously? You have a handful of days where you can’t work on your blog as much as you want…and you’re wondering if you should quit?

That’s so silly. Please go back and re-read THIS POST where you already said you weren’t quitting.

(Yes, this is your glimpse into my inner Katy-to-Katy conversations.)

So it took me a day or so to really think through this. And this is what dawned on me:

4 Secrets for Life’s Interruption

1. It’s Not Over

That beautiful plan you had? That thing you were dying to do? Chances are, it’s not gone forever.

That degree you really wanted? Last I checked, you can always go back to school. That country you wanted to travel to, but now you’re too broke to get gas for your car? That country will still be there when you’ve climbed back out of debt. That friendship that’s melted away after an across-the-country move? You can still reach out to that person and find new ways of being friends.

What you wanted may not be out of reach. It may be simply waiting down the line.

Be patient and see what comes.

2. Take Back Your Courage

Discouragement is one of the first things that usually sets in.  It whispers: See, now your plans will never pan out. You’ll never be happy. In fact, your life is probably over.

I want you to stand in front of your mirror and practice saying this one word: NO!

Talk back to your discouragement! Say something like, “Yes, this isn’t what I expected. It’s certainly not what I wanted. But I am not out of the game. I am in control of my life, and whatever path it takes, I determine what I do when I’m re-routed.”

Choose your response when life interrupts. I hope you choose this: Courage!

When life interrupts, I hope you choose courage!Click To Tweet

3. Get Support

Pull in people to support you. Really! Even when I got discouraged about being set back on my blog a couple of days, I told people. I told my husband. I told my blogging group. I’m telling you in this post.

And the people I’ve told? They empathized. “I’m right there with you!” They encouraged. “It’s ok, you can catch up.” They energized me. “You’ve got this! You can do it!”

Life’s interruptions can be really tough, I won’t lie. But you can get through just about anything with the right people at your side.

Don’t be afraid to reach out.

4. It Really Could Be Better

Ok, this might be the hardest one for some of us to swallow. But I’m going to put it out there anyway:

This new path really could be the better one.Click To Tweet

*Cue cries of shock and indignation.*

It’s ok, go ahead and let it out. I know I certainly have.

It’s hard to believe after the devastating breakup that you could ever find someone even better to love. It’s hard to believe that when the new school/career/dream that you pursued is suddenly gone, that anything else could make you happy. The unexpected illness that has knocked you flat — how on earth can that lead to anything good?

I promise you. However devastating it is right now…I promise it can get better

That breakup? Seriously, it can lead to the man of your dreams. The career unraveling? It made you re-evaluate and led to something more fulfilling. That illness? It gave you a hard year or two, but you came out of it. You gained so much understanding and empathy that you now lead a support group for others that changes and even saves lives; and you wouldn’t trade that for anything.

However devastating it is right now...I promise it can get better.Click To Tweet

Yes, Life Interrupts

And it can be hard, disillusioning, or even devastating. Or it could just be a minor disturbance, like in the case of my blog. But whatever the scope of your interruption is, I hope you will remember those four secrets above.

Or maybe even just this secret:

You can still do this. You are going to be just fine.

In fact, you may be great.

The Last Time: Why You (and I) Can Stop Starting Over

Why, hello, everyone! It is so great to see your bright and smiling faces back on this blog again! I am super excited to connect (and reconnect) with so many of you again.

Have you ever felt that tickle of apprehension? That moment when you’re about to launch back into something that you have tried before…and quit? You want so badly for it to work out this time — but you’re terrified.

For those of you who know me, you know I have blogged off and on for quite some time. I remember writing with blogspot.com in my teens, on Myspace, on WordPress.com, and then finally with the official katyhelena.com address in 2013. The blog continued for a time, and then lapsed as I worked on my Master’s in Counseling degree. I picked it back up again in 2015 for a whopping two posts, and then it died off again as I focused on building my counseling practice.

So with a record of off-and-on blogging, why am I even starting again? What makes this time different?

This time: I’m here to stay.

I heard this quote:

'If you're tired of starting over, stop giving up.'Click To Tweet

Oooh. Ouch.

Now, I heard this quote in the context of working out (another habit I am working into my daily life). But I believe it applies to so many other areas of life.

As a kid, I loved writing and dreamt of being a writer one day; and now I am ready to stop giving up on that dream. It is now or never if I am going to start and sustain a writing habit. But more than that, on my blog, I want to use my writing to help other people…to encourage them, to support them, to remind them of who they can be. That’s important–and I know, because that’s what I have needed along life’s way. When I realized all of this, I knew I needed to start my blogging again.

Will I be perfect? Heavens, no! But do I plan to give up this time? NO.

How about you?

Now, I know many of you have been there, too. You’ve started over so many times on THAT THING that you now wonder if it’s even possible to succeed.

Maybe it’s been one too many times you’ve started a healthier lifestyle. Perhaps you pumped yourself up to read the Bible daily, only to find yourself snoozing over the Scriptures on the second morning. Maybe it’s your marriage — maybe you read a dozen marriage books and attended counseling, but the spark refuses to come back. Or perhaps it’s that addiction you can’t leave, that unhealthy relationship you can’t quit, that person you can’t forgive.

Hopeless, wouldn’t you say? After all, you’ve tried. Like, 50 times. Best to let it go now; accept your lot in life.

Except…

What if…

What if there really was a way to keep from starting over?Click To Tweet What if it really was as simple as not giving up? Not doing it perfectly…but refusing to quit. Do you think you could do that?

I think you could. Absolutely. 100%.

And sure, I know that re-starting a blog is nothing compared to some of the challenges staring at you. But I also know that I once sat on a bed, hopeless about a condition that had never gone away in 18 years. No number of prayers, no number of medicines, no hours of therapy, could make my depression finally stop. And as poorly as I handled many of those years with severe major depressive disorder, I learned to do one thing right:

I did not give up.

To give up meant death. And I would not go there, even though sometimes I wished I could.

Do you know what the crazy thing is? I sit here today and haven’t had a major depressive episode in over a YEAR. I know! I have not felt this way about life since before I reached 13. And for an almost-32-year-old, that is saying something.

So I’m inviting you to do this with me: to stop starting over. Your life is waiting to be lived–and not just lived, but lived with delight, and joy, and ABUNDANCE.

What to Expect

On this blog, we are going to be talking about three things that, I believe, give us the greatest LIFE possible: Faith, Hope, and Love. We’ll look at how matters of faith, hope for change, and the love between us and others can contribute to a life you never thought possible.

This blog, though, cannot succeed without you; because this is a conversation, and we won’t truly learn unless we walk alongside each other.

So here’s my deal: I’m going to keep living a life that’s been hard, though it’s healing, and I will not give up on it. I am going to write this blog, and I will not give up on it, either. I’m asking you to join me in this. Whatever you’re ready to give up on, don’t…not yet, ok? Give it just a little more time. Let’s do this together.

Because maybe if we don’t give up on ourselves, and if we don’t give up on each other…maybe, just MAYBE…amazing things can happen.

I’m willing to take the chance. How about you?