What You Care About Should Be Defining Your Priorities

What You Care About Should Be Defining Your Priorities

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I've been thinking a lot about the shit I care about. You know, the stuff, the people, the places that actually light me up and energize me enough so that I can tackle the next thing in life. 

I think the list started forming in my head because I've been thinking a lot about what complacency does and doesn't look like for me, how I define happiness, where I intersect with wanting to take risks and wanting to feel settled. I don't think I'm alone (hello, every twenty-something year old trying to discover themselves), but while I can't claim to be the only person on this planet feeling my plight, I will hold steady to the ways that my solutions are so incredibly me. 

So, here's my top realization — I care about where I invest my time and my energy. 

The older I get (she says at the ripe age of 26 years and 9 months), the more I realize that I care a lot less about what people think of me and a hell of a lot more about what I think about myself and how I love on my priorities. I'm becoming the person I'm building by way of my decisions. It's scary and exhilarating to understand that I have that power over myself. It's grown up to know that my decisions have ripples that impact more than just my life and google calendar. 

And, so here is where my list became easy to write. 

I care about: 

  1. My family, chosen and born.

  2. My passions, not just my career because sometimes (too often that I'd like to admit) those two haven't always aligned.

  3. My integrity (this is actually probably number one, but let's not get too caught up with rankings because...)

Because...here's the other thing I learned recently, your priorities are words written in Sharpie on the back of Jenga pieces, but how you stack 'em is correlated to circumstances more than it is to heart-driven desire. There are have been days in my life when writing or taking a work trip to Switzerland have taken priority above all else, but then there are days when Geneva isn't as nice of a view as sitting next to someone who loves me wholeheartedly and who I love right back. 

In understanding my list I've had to accept that sometimes love is sacrifice and that sometimes I don't sacrifice enough and sometimes I sacrifice too much and most days I think I'm balancing, when really I'm just trying my best.  

Writing the list out made me see where I'm coming up short and instead of feeling eternally guilty about it, I'm just trying to do better. It's why I'm picking up where we left off. It's why I'm trying to love my passions just as well as I do my people. 

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