Don’t Worry If Your Plans Don’t Work Out

Verena Wilmes
3 min readMar 6, 2022

You can make new ones.

Photo by Nadjib BR on Unsplash

The future, that unwritten canvas in front of us, can scare the hell out of us. Especially in the modern world, with infinite options to live life.

It’s in our nature to fight that uncertainty by making plans. We want to have it all figured out. We know when we want to be at certain landmarks and we’ve got an idea about how to get there. We know what to study, which career to pursue, the age we want to marry and raise a family. We’ve got a plan of how our life is supposed to be.

But life tends to be unpredictable.

It doesn’t bow down to our plans. Sometimes, when we compare the reality, we live in, with our plans, we realize that we’re not where we wanted to be at this stage in our life. Actually, we realize further, that we don’t get everything we wanted. Dreams burst, we find ourselves on other paths, than the ones we aimed at.

When we were younger, we thought to have infinite options and possibilities to create a life. But the window of opportunities closes fast on us (or so it seems), while we’re busy with growing up and fulfilling the tasks of our daily lives. Suddenly we don’t have time for sports and the goals we had as athletes. We don’t have time to travel or to learn a new language. The job we planned to do short-term, becomes a long-term solution, because the career we aimed at, didn’t work out. Our partner leaves us, crushes the plan we had about raising a family in time. Or we find ourselves on the path we aimed at, but recognize that it doesn’t quite feel right. It doesn’t feel like it should have.

What do we do now?

Sometimes we give up and stop making plans altogether because we stop believing in our possibilities to alter our faith. Sometimes we stick to our plans, trying to make them real and end up bitter. But sometimes we allow life to show us different paths and we adjust, instead of remaining fixated on milestones, that should’ve been reached by now.

In life, we can never predict how relationships, careers, and dreams are going to play out. There are no guarantees, no matter how hard we work. We can never influence external things and we shouldn’t even try. We should focus on ourselves instead, our goals, and what we’re doing daily. And most importantly we should be honest with ourselves.

If something doesn’t feel right anymore, be it in our professional or private lives, we should adapt. Instead of fixing our identity to some vision, we had of ourselves. A plan is just a plan. We can always make a new one and an even better one.

Most of our plans changed since childhood. We have grown out of some and others didn’t work out. That’s life. We’re always growing and learning and so do our goals in life change. Sometimes we find treasures on paths, we never aimed at. There is beauty in that.

It’s just a plan.

You’re allowed to change it.