“There are two ways of going through life: Gather everything in sight, just in case you need it. Or trust that you’ll find exactly what you need, just in time.” – Martha Beck, O magazine, July 2009
I read an article in O magazine about just-in-time versus just-in-case living that made me think about how I live my life. I have always been a dreamer; someone who lingers in the past or anticipates the future, and as a result often misses the present. I want to become more present-focused and at peace with the here and now. The article spoke volumes to me in relation to many aspects of my life.
First, I’m a planner. That’s what I do. I create a plan, make list, and then execute the plan. The problem is I have a 90-10 rule for execution. Meaning I complete 90% and leave 10% unfinished. For example, let’s consider the way I buy products: Buy Now. Finish Later. The realization of this habit came to me when I was packing in preparation to sublet my apartment for the summer. I packed up my toiletries and had tons of duplicate products (7 shampoos, 5 different soaps, 5 lotions, etc.). I realized that when I am running low on something, I immediately put it on the shopping list. I’ll buy a second one, but will never finish the first. I like to stock up “just in case” I run out of something instead of buying it as I need it. To counter this, I’ve decided to set a rule for myself that I CANNOT put something on the list until it has been used up and thrown away.
I have been using this same JIC mentality for my job search. I applied for 30+ jobs, but only really liked about five of them. With so many people I know out of work, I felt the pressure of getting a job as soon as possible, “just in case (fill in the blank)”…the economy gets worse, there are more talented people flooding the workforce, etc. I was again planning for the future instead of living in the present. My upcoming trip to Spain is my step in the direction towards “just-in-time” living. Yes, I am concerned about delaying the job search. Yes, I am worried about spending money that I could be saving. But even stronger than both these concerns, is my faith. I believe that good things are in store for me. Everything will work out as it should.
Living a “just-in-time” life eliminates the uncertainty of the future. It instills a belief that everything we need is available and will be provided to us in due time. I know that good things are in store for me in the future and God will provide what I need. I have shifted mentally, now I need to align my actions to my thoughts.