Tuesday, February 17, 2015

When the Unexpected Happens...

It's happened to the best of us. We have our day (week, month, year) planned out, and then something drops in out of the blue and we have to do a 180 and change our focus. That happened to me this week (not directly. A family member had an setback and needed my assistance, and I suddenly had to rethink my week). This means that some plans have to be cancelled, other events will be pushed to a later date, but more importantly than the change in schedule is the change in mindset we all face at such times.

I'm a person who likes order, focus, plans. I make lists, lots of lists. I like knowing what's going to happen ahead of time.

But the good news is that when the unexpected hits us, most of us have coping mechanisms, or if we don't, we develop them quickly. Some of the best advice I was ever given happened during my first week as a brand new teacher when a fellow (experienced) teacher said, "Just remember to be flexible." I always have.

In trying to be flexible, I've developed my own very short list of personal coping mechanisms over the years for those times when life gives me...something I didn't anticipate. It has served me well.

When the unexpected happens, I set aside the things I can set aside, and I focus on small tasks that can be dropped and picked up at a moment's notice (right now I have a book I'm editing and will be uploading soon, but that takes lots of concentration, so this week, I'm reformatting The Wish List and getting it ready to be re-uploaded to various book sellers with a new cover and a new blurb). There's a certain satisfaction in slowly watching this come together as I take care of more important business.

The other thing I do is read old favorites. Since I've been there before, I don't mind stopping and setting them aside when I need to. But because they're satisfying books--the old favorites I pull out during these times always have happy endings--they make me feel good during a time when things are bit frustrating.

So here are the results of my now reorganized week. The new cover:

And the book that made me smile this week:

Susan Elizabeth Phillips is a favorite author. I don't think she's ever written a bad book, but I have my personal super-favorites, and Ain't She Sweet? is definitely on the list. Loads of conflict, lots of fun and funny and romantic and sexy banter as well as a very satisfying story.

How do you change things up when the unexpected happens? What types of books are your favorite comfort books?

Have a wonderful day!



Mary Preston said...

I have come to expect the unexpected. I tend to deal with things as they happen & then move on.

My comfort reads tend to be the classics: Austen, Bronte etc.

Myrna Mackenzie said...

Mary, that's definitely the best way to be! (And I love the classics. Jane Eyre was the first of those I read, and I go back and reread it now and then. Or I watch the movies. Likewise with Jane Austen. I never get tired of her books).