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Living in the Wild Wild World: The Planner’s Guide to Spontaneity

There is one in every friend group. She is the planner. The organized one. She’s got three extra granola bars in her purse in case one of the squad gets hungry. She’s the one who brought roll up flats to the dance so she can keep dancing in comfort. Her bag has Mary Poppins-like qualities and she thrives on a perfectly executed event. With this love of organization, the planner often has a difficult time with spontaneous road trips or surprises. A trip without an itinerary is the worst nightmare of the group planner.

This week I stepped out of my comfort zone as a planner and did the most spontaneous thing I could think of. And by spontaneous, I mean that I bought tickets to a Monday night concert in Chicago 6 months ago and have been planning this trip since. But it seemed like something a little on the wild side for me and so I was feeling the adrenaline. While the purchase of the tickets was spontaneous, you can guarantee that there was much preparation to making sure that my impromptu night of fun was well thought out. Here’s a few tips for those event executors looking to have a taste of the impulsive lifestyle without dying from the adrenaline rush.

DO buy your tickets in advance.

DO NOT leave yourself without alternatives.

Jump on any opportunity you see! Basically the equivalent of an impulsive buy from an online sale, ticket purchases can be exhilarating. Whether you are sitting by your computer when the tickets go live or you stumbled upon them a week later, picking your seats is the first step towards an exciting night. But make sure that if you buy your tickets in advance, you have a place to sell them or friends to pass them on to if your week gets busy.

DO clear your schedule.

DO NOT worry about unfinished work while on your trip.

Take the time to make sure you’ve got nothing else to worry about. Once you start your journey, forget about the usual woes of a college student and enjoy.

DO pick out your outfit

DO NOT wear something that’s uncomfortable

Concerts, plays, and fancy dinners are prime chances to show off your fashion sense. Plan an awesome outfit that makes you feel like the queen you are, strut your stuff the whole time, and make sure to bring a pair of sweatpants for the ride home.

DO have a travel plan

DO NOT rely on internet maps

There’s nothing worse than having a fantastic night ruined by getting lost on the backroads of Michiana. Don’t rely on GPS either because you never know when service might cut out in a creepy cornfield. Go old school with some paper maps, plus you’ll feel like a real adventurer.

DO take pictures

DO NOT spend the entire trip on your phone.

It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of an event and want to catch it all on camera. I had to limit myself to three videos over the course of a 2-hour concert and used them all up in the first three songs. But at the end of the day, what’s more important: that your Snapchat friends see you’re having a great time or actually living in the moment?

DO have awesome company

DO NOT worry if your plans aren’t perfect.

Pick a friend/significant other/ family member to share your spontaneous night with. I’m sure they’ll laugh at your idea of impulsive but they’ll also make sure you don’t get all worried when your elaborate plan doesn’t follow through.

The tips above might seem like the antithesis of spontaneity, but for the squad planner, this is a step closer to living on the edge. Most importantly, a little attempt at throwing caution to the wind can be a reminder that we cannot account for every variable and sometimes you just have to sit in traffic and enjoy the journey.



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Images: 2, 3, 4, 5, rest provided by author

Hi everyone, I'm Margaret! I'm a sophmore in Cavanaugh Hall (embrace the Chaos) and I'm majoring in Neuroscience with a minor in Science, Technology and Values. I'm from Falmouth, Maine where I work for a company that makes really awesome bags and purses from old boat sails. In my spare time, I love to dance, read, and binge watch series on Netflix. I also pride myself on my skills as a foodie, so if any one knows of places to get good grub around South Bend, I'd love to hear about them! Notre Dame has been my dream school practically since birth and I still haven't come down from cloud-nine yet despite the struggles of Organic Chemistry- here's hoping that feeling never goes away!
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