Are you the type of person who must have a detailed plan before you begin – or do you prefer to just start and go with the flow?

Overplanners are great at making stuff happen… but they can also be a bit too rigid, missing out on unexpected opportunities. They can also suffer from analysis paralysis – where nothing ever gets done because the plan isn’t perfect.

Underplanners are great at thinking on their feet, fitting work in around unexpected obstacles, and dreaming up creative schemes. But sometimes they can be too distracted and scatterbrained, and either take way longer than necessary to get stuff done… or just never get it done at all.

Both approaches have their pros and cons, and in this episode of the Create & Thrive Podcast I’ll be talking about overplanners and underplanners – and how you can try to negate the negative aspects of each planning approach.

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Quotes and highlights from this episode:


  • Overplanner

  • Pros:

  • Greater productivity

  • Time for self-care + less stress if it’s scheduled in

  • A plan for when things go wrong/ for where you want to go

  • Systems that reduce mental load/allow outsourcing

  • A feeling of being in control

  • Cons:

  • Analysis paralysis

  • Missing opportunities due to rigidity

  • Taking on too many responsibilities/other people’s problems

  • Sticking to something that’s not working longer than you should

  • Underplanner

  • Pros:

  • Going with the flow – spontaneity and flexibility

  • Focus on the now, rather than the ‘what ifs’

  • Freedom – to do what you want, when, and follow whims

  • Cons:

  • Lack of progress due to lack of focus

  • Not planning for when things go wrong/ lack of contingency plan

  • Stress due to overwhelm (putting out fires)

  • Some strategies

  • Build deliberate ‘white space’ into your calendar to allow for spontaneity + dealing with unexpected issues (don’t over-schedule yourself).

  • Reward yourself – make planning pleasant rather than painful.

  • Practice spontaneity – if you’re rigid, practice going with the flow.

  • Set a goal and a date to achieve it.

  • See a plan as a guideline, rather than a rulebook.

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