It can be easy to get stuck in the rut that is life when you don’t have anything to look forward to. Sometimes you simply run out of plans, maybe it’s the come down of a particularly busy period, but it really helps no end to have something in the distance keeping you going.
Last year I wrote an article called ‘Lighthouses‘ which focused on how it pays to have something to look forward to. Kirsty and I had received some great news and, almost at the exact same time, received some awful news too. You can read more about it here, Lighthouses, but needless to say it was having something good to look forward to that can keep you going at these times.
Recently, (and I say recently to mean the past several months) it’s been hard for me to make plans due to work commitments. I’ve had to work weekends, I had to work evenings, I’ve had photography jobs booked (Definitely not complaining about this part! But does hamper the social life somewhat), and all in all I’ve been a busy little bee. Over the time, plans were something I couldn’t really afford to make, as I was aware they may have to be canceled last minute to cater for work. The thing is, all that ended recently, but my attitude didn’t; I was stuck without plans.
We’re not even talking big plans, I didn’t make any small plans either. I didn’t book a small cinema trip, or a quiet night in with Kirsty, I didn’t go for a few at the local with friends, or host a night of board games round mine. Plans were drying up, the light was dying down, the murk of everyday monotony was encroaching all around. You see, I like to think of these little plans, the smaller moments, as fireflies guiding you through the dark every day. The bigger events, the ones you build up to from afar, are your lighthouses, the end goals on the horizon. One light might be brighter than the other, but they’re both important, and they both keep you moving through the darkness. I’d lost my lights to the shadow of work.
Now though, I have a new taste for planning. I’m reminded by how good it feels to have something to look forward to. I’ve been booking tickets, I’ve been contacting friends, I’ve been making plans! And, in all honesty, it feels great! Surrounding yourself in fireflies, meals with family, drinks with friends, and nights watching that reality show finale you’ve been shamefully lured into watching a whole season of… ahem… All great little lights that take no time at all to set into motion, keeping you going when things are getting you down. Then, on top of that, having that lighthouse to aim for, those bigger events like a holiday or wedding, really does make it easier to move forward, it makes life feel that bit more worthwhile. When you’re trudging through the day to day, or dealing with some inevitable negatives thrown your way, that future plan on the horizon is something to keep powering through towards. And when it’s over? When the big day you’ve been building towards is all done, memories now made? There’s usually a come down, a ‘back to reality’, but as long as you have more plans to keep in sight, things are sure to be good! Just keep following the fireflies to reach that next lighthouse.
I partly think this is the reason for the ‘Honeymoon‘ after a Wedding, something to look forward to after the day and something to ease the emotional come down when it’s done. Believe me, I work enough Weddings to tell you that they fly by, literally zip by in an instant. It’s one of those ‘Blink and you’ll miss it‘ scenarios. On a side note: it’s why I love photography so much, you’re able to capture these fleeting moments, provide eternal proof of this magnificent day for people; a day that they struggle to remember despite having to have put months, or years, of blood, sweat, and toil into planning. A shameless plug for Level Up Photography if ever there was one.
So this is a public service announcement, a message to you all, make plans! It doesn’t have to be expensive, like a holiday, it doesn’t have to be big trip, some of the best things to look forward to can be the cheapest and the smallest. Having an evening of peace with a loved one, cuddling up under a blanket with a book. Sure, if it’s a grand occasion, (a few theatre trips, a reunion, and a gig, to name a few of mine), it might be a brighter light through the dark, but the little fireflies of smaller events can lead you just as well.
Do you agree? What are you looking forward to in the near future? Lighthouses, Fireflies, I want to hear either! Let me know in the comments below!