Christmas Town and Failure to Plan

This past weekend, we took our family to Busch Garden’s Christmas Town for the first time. As you probably expect, I usually plan our excursions with military precision, being a planner by trade and all. But this time, I decided to wing it.

The park opened at 2pm, but we chose to arrive at 5pm—right when the sun went down and the park got really cold, dark, and crowded. I had briefly studied the map while entering the park, in the dark, and saw that most shows were running on the hour. So, we ran off to the first show. Only to arrive at the one hour that the show was NOT playing.

The kids got restless, so we went to eat…in a crowded amusement park…at 6pm…along with the rest of the guests in the park that evening. We stood in huge lines to get our dinner, then there were no tables. We ate quickly then ran to the next show we wanted to see…which we also missed.

The kids were getting very upset, so we went to Santa’s Workshop to get warm and a huge line had formed. By this time, the kids were frozen and in tears after walking all over the park without aim or direction.

SO, we found a warm spot, got a drink and a map, and figured out our plan. We determined that we would ride the Skyride, see the lights, take in a show (checking the show time!), and finish by buying a small souvenir. With our plan in place, we set off to execute it.

The kids were refreshed and understood the order of events. The adults were glad to walk from warm spot to warm spot. We walked with purpose, much calmer, got everything done, and went home happy.

The bottom line is that life is much smoother with a plan —without one, we had wasted time, energy, and money. Plus, we were anxious and undecided. With the plan, we had direction and purpose. We even squeezed in a game and a snack that weren’t on our agenda—but we felt flexible to make those changes.

Life does change our plans, but it helps to have one to start with. Setting a plan in place and getting started on executing it helps us to frame decisions that come our way in the context of whether our choice will move us forward toward our goal or further away from it.

So, if you need help setting a plan in motion, please call us—it sure beats wandering around, missing out on opportunities…like the chance to see Santa in his workshop at Christmas Town!

Merry Christmas!

Categories : Financial Planning

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