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Ever had a week wot went wrong? Here’s how I handled mine!

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Have you ever experienced a week where everything seemed to go wrong? If you’re human, I’m guessing the answer is a resounding ‘yes’. Life has this terrible (wonderful?) habit of conspiring against even the best-laid plans!

As I’m pretty sure we’ve all been there, I thought it would be useful to share more of what went on in my most recent week wot went wrong, how my productivity was impacted and what I did about it. If you find it hard to adjust when things don’t go according to plan, I hope this will help..

If you saw my blog about the lessons I learnt this summer, you’ll know that my two weeks away from VA work did not go according to plan. My intention for those two weeks? To connect with more lovely business owners like you, to update my website, to transfer my email marketing to a new provider and to spend some delicious creative time working on new content to share with you.

But in the very first week – in fact before the first week even starts – things go squiffy…

Sunday evening: whilst trying to fix a problem with my phone, all the USB ports on my laptop stop working so I can’t use my mouse or keyboard.

Monday morning: I spend several hours trying to fix said USB ports

Monday afternoon: we take a break to construct our new bed, with the intention of returning to work later. Is it just me who always, ALWAYS underestimates the amount of time it takes to assemble flatpack furniture?! Will I never learn?! By the time we finish it’s 9pm.

Tuesday morning: I unexpectedly need to help with a family medical situation, which means postponing that morning’s research calls and being out all morning.

Wednesday: I take my laptop in for repair.

Thursday: I try again to fix my phone, and the USB ports on my laptop stop working. Again.

At this point, I’m beginning to feel a wee bit frustrated!

My ‘breathe and let go’ mantra has been serving me well all week, but Thursday tips me over the edge. There’s a lump in my throat (my standard physical response to agitation and anxiety) and I want to cry from frustration.

My beautiful, spacious week is slipping through my fingers. Now my laptop and my phone both need fixing (again) and I’ve hardly done any of the tasks I’ve been so looking forward to.

So, what do I do?

First I have a mini strop (because we’re all allowed a bit of a flounce from time to time).

Then I remind myself that with the exception of flat-pack-bed-gate, everything that happened this week was outside of my control.

I spend a moment thinking about what I have achieved during my week.

And then? Feeling much more grounded, I figure I have three choices:

1)     Find things to do that aren’t impacted by my broken laptop and phone

2)     Watch Netflix for the rest of the day to take my mind off it

3)     Take a break and then come back to fix the problem

This realisation makes all the difference: I get to choose.

What I choose doesn’t really matter - there’s no right or wrong - what matters is that I make a conscious choice, taking myself out of victim mode.  

Although options 1 and 2 feel most appealing in the moment, I choose option 3. Why? Because the tech isn’t going to fix itself and I’m buggered if I’m going to allow all this frustration and irritation to creep into next week.

Yes, this choice means I’m still not moving forward with the things I want to focus on this week. But if instead of running from the discomfort I can stay with the problem and fix it, I’m setting myself up for a fun, productive week next week. So I double down and spend the rest of Thursday on the phone to the laptop repair people and doing all I can to resolve the tech problems.

Then I recalibrate. I reassess and reset my expectations for the time that’s left. Again, I get to choose. I decide what’s still important and what I can safely let go of.

Did everything get done? No. But that doesn’t mean I can’t acknowledge and celebrate everything I did achieve. I’m so pleased I understand the importance of a Ta-Da list!

 

Perhaps my week wot went wrong was sent to test me. Or to show me just how far I’ve come. Had this happened many years ago, when I still subscribed to the productivity = self-worth paradigm, I’d have felt like an utter failure all week. The shitty committee (thanks to Selina Barker for that fabulous phrase!) that lives in my head would’ve been having an absolute field day telling me how useless I am. I’d probably have worked into the night, ruining any chance of getting a good night’s sleep and becoming increasingly wound up and cranky as a result.

As it happened, I got through it relatively unscathed. Yes, there may have been a few pity parties along the way (because… human!), but they were very short-lived.

How do you respond when you have a day or a week wot goes wrong? Would could you do differently? Please do share any insights or ideas in the comments below. I’d love to hear them!

What next?

Do you give yourself a hard time when things don’t go according to plan? I’d love to connect with you on a free Productivity Breakthrough Call so we can explore what’s possible when you take a more compassionate approach to productivity. Find out more and book your call here.

Louise Miller2 Comments