Expect the Unexpected

Being a mother of three children, running a business, having a husband who travels every other week, and trying to fit my own travel schedule into this lovely mess while having time for myself, too… is a HUGE challenge.

If something, I’ve learned something, especially since I became a mother almost seventeen years ago: there’s never a dull moment. There’s always something happening…

And if you have two or three (or more) children, it all adds up…

Have a business? – Great, add even more! Exponentially!

The strategy: Expect the unexpected

It took me many mistakes, failures, sleepless nights, and self-doubt to realize there was nothing wrong with me. It is my life situation, and instead of fighting against it, I should lean in and learn how to live with it.

My days consist of 24 hours, not even a minute more.

And yes, I have to squeeze in everything: family, work, household, me-time, friends, travel, … But if I book my time every day at 120%, there’s no room for anything unexpected.

And then, when a kid gets sick on top of it, or when the school calls that you should pick them up right now, or when a client sends you an urgent request, or when you get sick, or your bike (car) goes wrong, or any other unexpected happens… your day and your whole week collapses like dominoes.

And yes, often, you feel that your whole life collapses, too.

It hurts. A lot. And leads to more bad feelings, more sleepless nights, and more self-doubt…

It was hard and challenging, but also relieving to learn that nothing was wrong with me. Instead, I needed to change something.

And the first thing to change: my own expectations.

want to be a perfect, or at least good enough mother. I want to be successful in my business. I want to create a meaningful impact. I want to be healthy. I want to exercise three times a week. I want to read more. I want to sit and enjoy my cappuccino while reading a great book without interruptions. I want… I want…

But again: every day is just 24 hours…

So here is my strategy instead of trying to sleep two more hours less tonight (again)…

Every week, I allocate a few hours for the unexpected. Four hours is OK. Six or eight would work much better, even if it feels impossible. It is possible, life will tell!

This way, even if something unexpected happens, I can still stay on track with my tasks.

Well, with some hiccups, of course. Because if I have to pick up my son from school NOW, I might need to cancel/reschedule a meeting. If I get sick, I cannot travel to the conference I have been waiting for for months. If my bike/car goes wrong, I need to make a plan to get everyone home and get the bike/car fixed as soon as possible.

But hey, I am grateful I can do that. I am thankful my work is flexible enough so that I can arrange and re-arrange things like a puzzle. It’s so easy to focus on what’s wrong with all those unexpected things. Let’s focus on the opportunities – and the lessons learned.

Ps. Remember to book ten percent less work for next week…

Ps.2. Confession: Yes, I’m still learning this. It’s much better than it used to be, and I’m getting better and better every week. But still, there’s room for improvement…

What is your strategy for the unexpected?

I am a transformational life coach, supporting high achieving professionals on the journey to find their true calling, and pursue their dreams. Ever wonder who you would be if you got past the fear? Curious what you could be capable of if you shed the blocks holding you back? I am here to help you to discover.

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