I knew my last week at work would have its challenges.
I also knew it would be filled with moments of celebration and friendship. As it turned out, I was right on both counts.
So did my week turn out as planned? Definitely not.
Here are some simple tips for coping when things, no matter how much you plan them, don’t turn out how you expect them to.
Accept you can’t control everything
One thing I certainly could not have planned for and had no control over last week was a category 5 cyclone pummelling large sections of North Queensland.
While Brisbane was safe and out of harm’s way, many family and friends were directly in the cyclone’s path.
The days leading up to the cyclone hitting were filled with fear, anxiety, and worry. There was the talk of expected loss of lives as well as extensive property damage.
All of this so soon after Queensland going through devastating floods. People were feeling anxious and overwhelmed.
Thankfully all of my friends and loved ones were physically fine.
Overall a stressful couple of days, but something I simply could not have predicted or controlled.
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Go with the flow
With a farewell lunch booked and pre-ordered, I was looking forward to lunch with my teammates.
As we walked to our restaurant, one of my friends mentioned he thought he could smell gas. Seconds later, two fire engines come gunning down Elizabeth Street. We quickly found out that entry to the shopping center was blocked as the building had been evacuated due to a gas leak. The area was filled with emergency workers as people spilled into the Queen Street Mall.
Time to find another restaurant – not the easiest task on a Friday rush hour for lunch with 14 people.
Luckily we found a restaurant and settled down for a nice lunch. Walking back to the office, we discovered blocks of the city were closed and another shopping center had been evacuated.
To my relief, the gas problem was fixed quickly and Brisbane streets went back to normal.
While changing lunch venues doesn’t sound like much, the problem was our team of accountants was dealing with the end of the month and several other important deadlines. A long lunch wasn’t part of the original plan.
Sometimes we just have to go with the flow and stay calm when our plans get changed.
Take a break when required
I did not post at all last week. Despite feeling bad for neglecting my blog, I knew it would be better for me mentally and physically to take a break from blogging for the week.
After clearing my workload, preparing for a handover, and coming to grips with leaving work, the cyclone, and events that were going on in my personal life – I was glad I took the time off from blogging.
Sometimes it can simply be wiser to realize you have enough of your plate and accept that you can’t do it all, instead of pushing yourself past the point of exhaustion.
Have faith in the final outcome
I knew, in the end, it would all work out.
It might work out differently from how I had planned it, but it would work out!
Thankfully due to the wonderful people at work, my final day after 7 years turned out to be a good day.
They organized a presentation late afternoon, where they gave me a lovely card and present, and then it was off for a few celebratory drinks which I thoroughly enjoyed.
All in all a great day to mark the end of an era and the beginning of a new stage of my life – which was after all part of the grand plan.
No matter how much you plan or try to prepare, circumstances can mess with your grand plan. Stay focused, go with the flow and have faith that it will all work out in the end.
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