We always have a long list of things “To Do” that is basically endless. However, the best way to handle all those things “To Do“ is by establishing priorities. Priorities within the list and priorities in our lives. But how can we determine which things should be considered priorities? The answer is simple… If it affects your stability (mentally, emotionally, and/or financially), it should be treated as a priority.
To me, anything that has to do with my FAMILY (children, spouse/partner, and extended family memebers) it is considered a FIRST priority. It will come before work and before anything that could be in my never ending To Do List. For instance, if my children get sick, their well being will be my priority. I won’t do anything else, until I know they are healthy again. Another thing that can affect the stability of my household is the lack of organization. You see, my daughter and I have ADD and if we don’t have things in their place, we will go crazy! I recently moved (that's why I skipped my last Monday Blog) and organizing everything was a priority to me because not having things in their place would affect the functioning of us as a family. Therefore, it became a priority to finish with the move as soon as possible.
Another TOP priority is MYSELF! Sometimes I need to take time to speak or hang out with my friends, and some other times I need to just be with myself. If I am not feeling emotionally stable and need to work on stabilizing myself as soon as possible, I'll do it! Because feeling sad or down could jeopardize my role as a mom and/or as a manager at work. One thing I learned to do in order to recharge myself and find my stability is to meditate. It is the best way to quiet the mind and any worries I have. It is the best way to connect with God and I really find myself at peace. The best thing about meditation is that I can do it anywhere, and it doesn’t have to take a long time…I just need 5-10 minutes and I’m back on track.
In fact, anything that could affect our HEALTH should also be considered a priority. Taking care of ourselves by watching the kind of food we consume, the exercises we do, and of course, by visiting regularly the doctor to ensure our body is in good state. I don’t mean that we should all go into a strict diet or an exercise regime that is not sustainable, but being more conscious of what we consume and trying to exercise at least 3 times a week for 30 minutes is something we all can do. Our body is our motor. We need to make sure it is in good condition for it to take us to the places we need to go. Watching our health also includes the aspect of stress and mental health. We need to work on the areas that affect us particularly and prioritize our health, because without it, we cannot work or take care of our loved ones.
The FINANCIAL area is also another important aspect in life that should be part of our priorities. Having your finances in order is what will give you the “needs” and the “wants” for you and your family. Planning your expenses by following a Budget every month is key to a successful and stable financial life. I know what it is like to live paycheck to paycheck and end up with less than $10 (or even with a negative balance) in my bank account the day after I got paid. I spent too many years like that and I promised myself that I never wanted to experience that kind of stress again, and ever since I had planned all my financial moves by following a budget. It took time, compromise, and dedicatrion, but it is something anyone can achieve. I can write more in depth about this subject in another blog.
Lastly, I will include the PROFESSIONAL area. In order to be able to provide stability to our family, we need to have a job. I placed the job last in the list because even though it is important and it should be prioritized, it shouldn't go above the other areas I mentioned. Perhaps it can go together with the financial aspect. But your job should never be there to control your life. Remember that you are employed today and tomorrow they can simply let you go without caring about your loyalty or your excellent performance. Like money, a job comes and goes. It is good to give it your best but never to prioritize it over your family, yourself, and your health.
As you have noticed, I have covered all of the important areas of life: Family, Yourself (your mental health, emotional stability, your spirituality, and your much needed time with friends), Health (physically and mentally), Finances, and lastly your Profession (or job). It is very important to have your priorities in order because if one day you need to choose from one of them, you’ll know exactly which one will come on the top of your list.