When Things Don’t Go as Planned


Handling adversity is something I have really been trying to work on. (Along with patience.) Adversity is one of those things in life we will all face. ALL. No matter how rich, skinny, pretty, smart, or hardcore you are, it will come into your life in some fashion. The key is not to figure out how to avoid it because well…you can’t. Instead, the key is how you HANDLE it.


Lately, I have been in a “when things don’t go as planned” funk. I am a very planned out person, and I get extremely bend out of shape when there is a change of plans. I know, it sounds ridiculous, but it’s true. Even the smallest change can send me into a tailspin. I recently learned I get this from my mother (thanks mom!) Who apparently flipped out in Disneyworld recently when there was no parking in the hotel parking lot they were going to look at Christmas decorations in, and instead had to park at a neighboring hotel. I thought to myself… hhmm…”wow mom, that’s a bit much, just park somewhere else.” But I am sure people have thought the things I flip out about were no biggie.

The past few months I have had a LOT of my “plans” get changed, and I have not been handling the adversity as I should. I have had things happen (or not happen) in my life, as well as in my running/healthy living plans that have not made me very happy. For instance, I have yet to run a half marathon injury free. I was hoping Sunday would have been the day, but no dice. I had my heart set on a PR, and when I missed it by seven minutes due to injury, I got REALLY bent out of shape. Yes, yes, there will be other races, you can’t PR every time, blah blah blah. I did NOT want to hear it. At that moment, if you would have asked me to sign up for a race I would have said I am never running a half marathon again. GASP. I know, how awful of me to think it, but it was true. I don’t feel that way now, but I still am feeling a little burnt out.

We were supposed to close on our new home this Friday, but it is not going to happen until next week. I was so excited about being in my new house and living with my husband again after being apart since October. (I am really getting sick of living without him by the way.)

We had an offer on our house we are trying to sell last week. They made an offer, a very low offer, and we countered, with a VERY generous offer. I got excited thinking it was a done deal. They came back wanting even more (it was ridiculous all of the demands they were making) and we made the decision to say no thanks unless they took our counter offer.


There are some other things going on I am not really at liberty to talk about right now, but just trust me on this one. There is a LOT going on, and a LOT of things are not going my way. My first instinct when dealing with adversity is to pout. I get the whole woe is me attitude, it’s not a pretty sight. I got into one of those moods this morning, and I decided instead of dwelling on the adversity in my life right now, I would think of ways to get out of my funk.

1.) Talk it out. Keeping things bottled up inside is a surefire way to explode one day when you least expect it. Try to talk to someone outside the situation, who will listen attentively and be a shoulder to lean on. Make sure you tell them up front if you are looking for advice/feedback or just someone to listen.

2.) Think about the positive things in your life. I know it seems cheesy, but it really helps me. Instead of dwelling on the negative, think of the positive. I’m healthy, I have a loving family, and sweet puppies. We have food on the table every night, and a house to live in. When I start to shift my thinking, I realize how truly blessed I really am!

3.) Realize that YOU have control over your attitude. You have a choice in how you feel. I try to remind myself to not let me emotions get the best of me. When something does not go according to plan, I do NOT have to freak out. I can choose not to stress about things! Just make the choice (I know, easier said than done.)

4.) Realize that life is a journey. Barring getting hit by a bus tomorrow, life is going to have its valleys and mountains. It is highly unlikely that my current problems are going to last forever. Try and see the light at the end of the tunnel, and try not to look at your problem as a never ending cycle.

5.) Plan something fun. Even when my life is crazy and not going my way, if I have something to look forward to, a “bright spot,” then it helps me get through the problems I am facing. A weekend getaway or a girls night may be just what you need to snap you out of your funk.

6.) Don’t give up. If there is some goal you are trying to reach, like say a race PR, or to get out of debt, do not give up! Even if you face adversity, it can make you stronger if you have the right attitude. Will I run another half marathon? Of course. I will keep training and trying to reach my goal. Take THAT adversity!

Some things may not be going as planned, and I may not be able to control the situations, but I CAN control how I react to them!

**Side note: These are some practical ways to handle adversity. As a Christian, I also have some other tips for dealing with my problems. If you are interested in hearing about them, feel free to e mail me at runningwithsass@gmail.com and I would love to share!

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21 Responses to When Things Don’t Go as Planned

  1. 1
    Jen says:

    I’m sorry your house closing got pushed back, and I’m sorry so many things are not going your way right now. You have a good attitude! I always have to remind myself that I’m in control over how I react. It’s just so hard sometimes when you want something so normal so badly, and you fear you’ll never get it!

    • 1.1
      Heather says:

      I know. :( I know you are frustrated too. I know so many people whod ont take care of their bodies but can run SO fast, and I can’t run without my feaking injury and I take care of myself. sad times.

  2. 2

    Hang in there—sometimes the things that seem important at the time will be mere blips on the radar once some time passes. Other things ARE a big deal but you’ve outlined some great strategies for coping.

  3. 3
    Megan says:

    Oh how I can relate! We have been dealing with a lot of things not going our way recently as well. I feel like I’m constantly in a funk due to it all. (Even more frustrating when your family and church add to the junk as well…) Yes, it’s difficult — and when new opportunities arise, I want answers on them NOW! (Yep, patience is another thing I struggle with as well!)

    I’m praying that things will start to turn around for you — but feel free to vent to me if needed! I know how much it can help :)

  4. 4
    Caree says:

    Great post!!! It’s tough sometimes to think about the positve when things aren’t going our way…but these are great ways to do so!!! Thanks for sharing!

  5. 5
    Kristin says:

    I know exactly what you mean about having anxiety when plans get changed. I am the same way. The winter is always a tough time for me. I feel like I lose control and I get into a funk. Just remember, there is a lot going on in your life right now, so it is ok to feel this way. It will certainly pass at some point you will look back and think “Wow, I feel so much better now”.

  6. 6
    Bethany says:

    Hi Heather, sorry to hear about all these things going on in your life. You seem like you have a really good handle on things, eventho you say that’s not always true. I know running often gives people balance and makes people feel better, so when running related things aren’t going well either it’s tough, especially if that’s your main outlet. I can’t evenimagine how busy you must be with all this stuff! Hope things start to get worked out soon! I’ll say a prayer for you!

  7. 7

    thinking of you during these tough times! remembering that i control my attitude is one of the hardest things for me. it’s so easy to let “things” dictate how i’m feeling, but i try to remember that things can’t get me down unless I let them! stay strong! tomorrow is a new day :)

  8. 8
    Becky says:

    Sorry things have been tough for you lately. Hopefully life will settle down when you get into your new home and things will start feeling normal again. Injuries are no fun. Take care! I’m sending happy thoughts your way!

  9. 9

    Sorry to hear that you are so frustrated. But you really do have some great tips here that I will/have been using in my own life! 😀 Keep your head up! Things to work out in the end.

  10. 10

    […] am I facing sports related adversity with my injuries, but also life adversity. I recently wrote this post about it, in case you missed it.  I highly recommend this book to any athlete. It has some […]

  11. 11

    […] month ago today was February 15, the day after Valentine’s Day. I blogged about When Things Don’t Go As Planned. I was very frustrated as I wrote this post, dealing with handling adversity and when plans […]

  12. 12

    […] So, we are thinking we may take a spontaneous early Valentine’s Day-we-need-to-get-the-heck-out-of-town-before-we-lose-it trip next weekend. I love and miss the beach, and our favorite spot is only two hours away, so we may just go for it. I think I need to take my own advice (number 5) on my blog post about things not going as planned! […]

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