Evaluating your priorities

We all have a definite goal, in most cases more than one definite goal. And most of us focus our lives in achieving it. For some people getting a huge salary or making profits in business is a definite goal. For some having a big house or a large property, for some succeeding in exams and so on. But the most important of all these goals is to lead a healthy and happy life. Goals are the driving factor for most of us, something that makes us work hard and look forward to the next day.

There are two kinds of people:

1. Who work too hard towards the goal

These are the group of people who work so hard that they often forget to concentrate on their health and personal life (family). These kinds of people spend way too much hours at work and either think or do work even after reaching home. They slowly lose focus on their personal life and start ignoring their family and health.

2. Who work towards the goal but shift focus

These are the people who often get carried away in their daily routine and instead of working towards achieving the goal, start shifting focus on other things. They slowly move towards a different direction and by the end of the year realize that they are nowhere close to what they had planned to do.

Needless to say both kinds suffer in their own way. One has health problems in the long run and also might have an unhappy family back home and the other is dissatisfied at work.

One should often evaluate their priorities periodically to check if they are going in the right direction. And even if you are on the right track, think if achieving your goal is impacting other aspects of your life. For example there was this person I knew who used to work really hard, stay late at work and go home and start working again. Over the years his health started deteriorating and he ended up with partial disability. And believe it or not it’s not going to impact the company he was working for in anyway. The only ones impacted were the person himself and his family.

Here are a few things you should keep in mind while evaluating the priorities:

1. Check if achieving your goal is the true thing that gives you happiness – This is perhaps the most important thing. If you master this one then the rest of the points will be taken care automatically. Most of us make others priorities our own. We go by social norms. Getting a good job, a nice car, a nice home, shopping exclusive clothes, dining in fancy restaurants these are things that society makes us believe as important to have. Think beyond the box and find out what is it really that will make you happy. You do not want to spend 30yrs doing something and regretting that you wasted all your life doing nothing. Even if you are earning a whole lot doing what you don’t like – think after 20yrs will this make you happy. Will you feel satisfied by your accomplishments?

2. Evaluate if you are ignoring your health – People who often stay late at work tend to thrive on junk food. They take way too much caffeine, load up on sugary foods and munch on chips (high sodium). They also lack in physical activity and in the long run spoil their health. Think about it – what’s the point of working so hard if you won’t be here to enjoy the reaps or what’s the point of earning all the money when you will end up spending all of it in your medical bills in the long run.

3. Check if you are going in the right direction – Question yourself what is it that you really want. If you need a better pay, then think if working 24*7 will get you that or not. Most people work hard but are dissatisfied at the end of the year because they did not get promoted or a good hike. If you are in such a situation then may be its best to focus on increasing your knowledge and looking for jobs that would pay you better.

4. Check if your family and friends around you are satisfied – I knew more than one person who worked hard, got promotion and get engrossed in work so much that they don’t even look at their wife while talking to her, they are always into their blackberry. If you are anywhere close to this behavior then it’s time to reflect on it and make amendments.

Many people talk about working a lot until they are 40 or 45 and mint all the money they want and after that they would retire and spend the time with their family vacationing. The truth is this is never going to happen. You don’t even know if you will live till 40 and even if you manage to live who guarantees that you will be in good health or if your family is going to be around you then. Learn to appreciate what you have with you now. And evaluate what you are doing is really worth the time spent.

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