“I love when past me has my back!” said current me as I pulled a pair of earbuds from my laptop bag.

My family and I have been on the road for 11 days now. I think that’s right. I only know it’s a Sunday because my partner reminded me when I was confused as to why the supermarket wasn’t open at 1 pm.

I really do love a road trip.  There is a lot of work involved and it can be quite stressful to prepare. Once we have the car packed, a quick head count and a pocket check (keys, wallet, phone) however, the freedom and adventure begin.

There’s no pressure to get a lot of work (if any) done while I’m on holiday. I find though that these are the times when I feel the most inspired to write.  Unfortunately, despite the abundance of inspiration, I don’t make the time to actually do any writing because I am so engrossed by the adventure. No, that’s not unfortunate, I’m having a great time. Anyway…

We’ve arrived in Charters Towers – a large rural town southwest of Townsville in northern Queensland.

As it’s a Sunday, there’s not a lot going on and we’re taking the opportunity to have some downtime in our home for the night – a cabin in a local tourist park. While the kids are playing Uno on the top bunk and the driver is enjoying a doco on tv (ironically, it’s a doco about a road trip around Australia 😂), I have snuck out onto the deck with my laptop and a bowl of stolen trail mix.

To keep myself focused on work, I like to pop my earbuds in and listen to some instrumental music (rn I’m listening to a playlist called 639 Hz on Spotify).

A few minutes ago, I was making excuses to myself about it not being a good time to work.

Why not? Because: (a) my Bluetooth earbuds don’t work with my laptop (I could totally listen from my phone while working on the laptop), and, (b) even if they did they’re out of charge anyway (this has been true for days and I’ve made no effort to charge them). 

I do REALLY want to have done SOME writing today though and it is definitely a good time to do it. So I pulled out my laptop to give it a go and what do you know… there is a set of wired earbuds in my laptop bag.  “I love when past me has my back!”.

This is what being organised and decluttered is all about—anticipating the needs of my future self and setting her up for success. 

I’m also learning that practising gratitude for my past self is part of this success too.  Every time I feel that little zing of joy that comes from finding the thing I needed readily. I acknowledge that this is something for which I am grateful. This gratitude is a little reward for my brain and a reminder that I want to keep doing things to reward myself in this way.

Maybe you are just starting out with this, and the earbuds are not turning up as if by magic right where and when you need them. That sucks, I’m sorry. You *can* work towards this magic by looking out for other occasions when past you has had your back. You can also make a conscious effort to do things for your future self to start the ball rolling. Another thing your future self will thank you for is reaching out to book a call with me or even diving right in and doing one of my courses 😉!

Here are some other things I am grateful to my past self for:

  • It’s so nice to have my socks already paired for me. – Thanks past me!
  • Good job grabbing that apple before we left home this morning, past me, it saved me from stopping at the drive-through when I got snacky!
  • Yeah, I’m definitely going to want a coffee, glad I did the dishes earlier.
  • Made extra dinner last night and now we have leftovers for lunch today. Score!
  • Scheduling those appointments last time I was at the hairdresser/beautician/physio/chiro/etc. now I won’t forget or put it off. Love you, babe!
  • Living out of a suitcase for a month? What a great idea it was to pack mix ‘n’ match outfits, so I’m prepared for this unexpected weather/activity/occasion! – You rule past Lauren!

Not to mention all the people for whom I’m grateful. Past me has made some excellent choices in friends, business and clients that current me preserves for future me to be grateful for.

I don’t think I’ve ever regretted something past me has consciously done with the intent of looking out for future (current) me. Most of my regrets have come about when I’ve ignored that good intent and slacked off, leaving the job for future me.

Case in point: last night I found myself ironing underwear to dry it before we packed. I had ignored my instinct to do the laundry when we arrived on a sunny day in Hughenden and left it for the next day – it rained.

I can tell you one thing, undie-ironing-Lauren was not grateful to laundry-avoiding-Lauren at all. Though, article-writing-coach-Lauren is a little thankful to them both for the content.