What do you do when you’ve placed a lot of time and thought into your plan, but your plan does not seem to work out accordingly? How do you deal with the stress that is associated with having to make adjustments in the middle of a time restraint? Well, staying calm is your first inclination, but your initial action is to push the panic button. Staying calm and maintaining one’s composure is easier said than done. It is always less stressful for the person giving advice to stay calm, especially when they are on the outside looking in.
Pressure exists when time and schedule collides – which inevitably creates deadlines. However, a different kind of pressure exists when you are in the process of buying a new home and moving out of your existing one. I have never personally experienced or seen anyone seeking to purchase a home, where everything went according to plan. I am sure that there are isolated cases out there, but the majority of house hunting and moving in situations fail to meet the time schedule. A person can plan, plan and plan; but just when you think you have it all down, covering every mishap, something happens. Usually, someone in the process misses their cue, drops the ball, or procrastinates during the timetable, and creates an inconvenience for you.
I recall in 1993, my wife and I were in the process of buying our first home together and we thought we gave ourselves ample time to prepare to move out of the house we were living in and move into the new one. We had it all together. We were going to have the old house painted, cleaned and ready for the new tenets to move in right before closing on our new home. It was set, we were ready to move out, and I received a call from my real estate agent that closing was might be delayed for several days. My wife started asking questions concerning the reason for the delay and becoming frantic about having a place to stay. I couldn’t answer her questions until I spoke with the mortgage company. Suddenly, we are pushed into a situation that had catastrophic written all over it.
I quickly realized my temperature was rapidly increasing, so before I got out of control, I decided to remain calm so that I could digest the information and consider our next step. Two people in a panic only creates [create sounds wrong] more panic. I asked the new tenets if they could delay moving in to our home for several days until the mortgage company could straighten out the paper work. Thank God, they did not have a problem with it. When we sat down with the mortgage broker, he explained a catch 22 scenario and informed us that they would have to resubmit the paperwork to the loan committee. I asked, “How long will this take?” “Up to 30 days”, said the mortgage company broker. I wanted to say that we didn’t have thirty more days, but in reality, I resolved that we had as long as it was going to take to move into our new home.
I was determined that I was not going to be beaten down by someone’s apparent oversight and allow them to push us into a difficult situation. I said to the mortgage broker to resubmit the paper work, knowing that he didn’t have the guts to mention it was his fault. I collected my thoughts, talked to my wife about our next step and informed the new tenets to prepare to move in two days from then. We moved into a hotel, placed our furniture in storage, and went to a restaurant for dinner. When we became calm, so did our environment. It was not the end of the world; it was the beginning of a new plan. We ended up moving in with friends and paid them what we would have paid the hotel.
The mortgage paperwork took approximately thirty days to be approved and for us to move into our new home. However, something happened with us when we did not allow the situation to dictate to us feelings of panic and uncertainty. When situations are out of your control, it does not mean that you are out of control. Keep your cool, relax, and allow your creative juices to flow. You will discover new avenues that ultimately create situations that turn in your favor. Moreover, your blood pressure will remain 120 over 80, your stress will be less, and today will eventually turn into tomorrow. When schedules and time collide, don’t you crash with them! When things are out of your control, you remain in control. See you at the next deadline.
My book, Unexpected Treasures will give you many points on how to not coexist with stress, but neutralize its effect.