Why Taking Time to Plan Pays Off



Why Taking Time to Plan Pays Off

By Selena Aguilar, Nebraska State Fair Entertainment Assistant and CYN Steering Team Member

As someone who helps plan one of the largest events in the state I spend my days planning for anything and everything. What shade of blue are the volunteer’s table toppers? Where does one refrigerate butterflies? Where can I find a forklift? How much time is between two entertainment acts? Now, even though some things that I plan may be a little “out there,” there is one thing I plan that everyone can relate to—and that’s life.

When I say life-planning I’m not talking about wanting to be married in five years and have 3 kids within the next 10—or owning a business in 18 months. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just plan everything? I’m talking about day-to-day needs. Planning for daily activities relieves so much in-the-moment stress and allows more time in the day. Believe me, with the kind of hours I pull, you take every second you can.

As somewhat of a professional planner, here are three steps I’ve found to be the most helpful:


Create a Daily Routine.

It may seem repetitive, but when you create a routine for yourself, a decision never has to made. Think about when you first start a job. You’re slow as you start to learn, but once you know the drill you can fly through the work. When you translate this into, say, getting ready in the morning, you open more time for things you love to do—like catching some extra z’s.


Think Ahead.

Using a little bit of your free time to think ahead, makes life so much more efficient. Meal planning is becoming increasingly popular. Honestly, it’s magical. Sacrificing an hour of my Sunday so that I can pop some grilled chicken pita pizza in the microwave for 2 minutes instead of heating up a T.V. dinner or, worse yet, cooking a meal every night, is worth it. But meals aren’t the only thing I prepare ahead of time. I also hang my outfits together for the week so I can grab and go. I even plan which days to mow and clean the house.

The result? A whole lot less stress, and more free time to do what I enjoy.


Turn off Work.

This is a big one. When you are at home, you are at home—that means you’re not work. Obviously this doesn’t always work, believe me. You never know when one of the State Fair Queens is going to win Miss Nebraska…Congrats, Allison, by the way!

But do your due diligence to create some sort of separation.

Don’t feel guilty about leaving once your hours are logged and your work is done. Remembering yourself and your family is important. I promise you work is not as important. (Just don’t tell my boss I said that.) Make sure that when you are at your son’s football game or a pumpkin patch this fall with the family that you are actually present mentally as well. Whether it’s a big presentation or something else that’s been bothering you, turn off work. Live in the moment.

Lastly, despite the regimented life I may have led you to believe I have, I promise no one has it together 100 percent of the time.

But overall, when you open up more time for yourself, you also open up more leeway. Didn’t get to something tonight? Guess what, now you have more time and flexibility to do it tomorrow. If all else fails, remember to wake up every day like it was on purpose! Oh, and have a little fun.

How will you plan to create more time?

Selena Aguilar

Selena Aguilar

Entertainment Assistant | Nebraska State Fair
Join Selena on LinkedIn

Selena Aguilar is originally from Grand Island, Neb., where she returned after graduating from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln College of Journalism and Mass Communications in December 2016. Selena works as an entertainment assistant for the Nebraska State Fair, and serves as a member of the CYN Steering Team. She is passionate about fostering diversity and contributing to her community.



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