How to Sort out Your Priorities

What do you want to get done in your lifetime?

Then that is what you should care about.

I once read a really great comic that I wish I could find again. It was three people sitting in a lawn, and two of those people were discussing how they wished they could have their dream life. They are going on about things they wish they could do when the third character interrupts them to say that they already have the life they want. The other two disagree with him, of course, because they don’t have all the things or the job they really wish they could have and the main character explains to them that they don’t have these things because those things aren’t really a priority to them and therefore, they do have the life they want because the things they have are the things that are a priority.

At first everyone wants to shake their head and get angry at this statement but the truth is this:

You already have the life you want. If you really wanted something else, you would make it happen.

I know this doesn’t sit well with people. I know there are people out there who will have ten thousand reasons for why they don’t want the life they have and the fifty things they would change if only they could!

But….you can change those things. You just don’t really want to.

Now the reasons you don’t want to change the things you don’t like differ from person to person and I’m not going to pretend to be some sort of psychotherapist who can look into your past and understand what’s going on with you. For me the primary reason I don’t change things in my life is fear. For some people it’s laziness. For others it is the fact that they are just too comfortable where they are. There are a lot of other reasons too, I’m sure.

It is easy for me to find an excuse for not doing the things I want to do. For example, I would really like to be able to work from home. I’m not dumb, I have a lot of things I can do that would bring in some okay income:

  1. Attempt to monetize this blog
  2. Sell masks/bags/aprons/embroidery on Etsy
  3. Tutor students online
  4. Write piano music for children
  5. Create meal plans for people trying to lose weight

But I don’t do these things because, at my very core, I am very scared of failure. Whenever I think about doing these things something inside me tells me “but what if you get your car repossessed and your house taken away?” And so I go back to my (admittedly fun and challenging but ultimately time consuming and life sucking) regular job which guarantees a steady paycheck.

And so I don’t work from home. And I can’t claim that working from home is a priority for me because clearly I don’t do it.

Same thing goes for learning how to play an instrument or working out, running a marathon, learning how to paint, etc. You can SAY these things are important to you and that you’d like to do them, but until you actually really make them a priority in your life you won’t be able to do them like you want to.

So that’s how you figure out what your priorities are – you already have. Look around you. What do you spend most of your time on? Those things are your priorities. You can say whatever you want but if you really wanted to be able to do something, you’d be researching that right now instead of reading a blog about how to figure out what is important to you.

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