Shuffling priorities to suit you doesn't always suit you

By Dwight Collins | Sep 03, 2014

Camden — If you look at your list of priorities and the first thing listed isn't you – in my opinion – you need a new list.

One thing I have learned over the years is that if you don't take care of yourself, you are no good to anybody else. Mind, body and soul -- in order to have positive, productive relationships, the health of those three things have allowed me to be stronger for others when they can't be for themselves. It's inner strength, the little bit of extra when we don't thinks we can push through anymore of the drama and negativity that people these days have the insatiable need to create and wallow in.

A healthy body allows you to work those 16-hour days to make sure that the rent is paid and the cupboards have food in them. A healthy mind tells you to keep going when your healthy body is too tired to continue.

I actually have a list of priorities, ones that I have written down time and again. White-out, swap, switch, re-switch – my priorities change position of importance on a daily basis, but there are a few that will never change. To myself, I promise to take care of myself, so I can take care of others. My children, family and faith are solid at number two. I am not religious, meaning I do not follow one specific religion, but I do feel a greater power and I do feel that things happen for a reason.

I have been working very hard on learning how to create and keep relationships. Not just with my girlfriend [definite priority] or any romantic relationship, but with every person I come in contact with that I know my actions may have an affect on. Building relationships with your children, good, solid, strong relationships is also a good idea if you expect them to be able to have them with others. We as parents need to model behavior, but also realize we do not own our child's personality, they have free will and act accordingly.

I try to be mindful, and selfless, but in order to be healthy and foster healthy relationships, I feel you have to be a tad bit selfish. Selfish enough to realize that it's not healthy to give all of yourself to others and have none left over to allow yourself to be happy.

Giving my kids a healthy, productive home life is something that any good parent strives for, but just because it doesn't always work out, does not mean your not a good parent. As much as teens will be teens, the fact of the matter is each child is different, so parenting every child the same way doesn't always work and doesn't mean they are a bad child.

Work is a priority only for the fact that we live in a money-driven society and in order to provide the basic essentials, some have to work two or more jobs to make ends meet.

After this short list, my priorities change with the weather, as things become more or less important, I move them up or down.

The things that have to happen to allow future growth always take priority. Growth is change and if I'm are not changing a little everyday, my priorities are skewed.

I often wonder what criteria people use in creating a priority list. Is it based on what is important to their person, or is it what's important to the greater good? Situations change priorities, the priorities of a 17-year-old are much different than those of a 42-year-old and for good reason – responsibilities.

Some people think that priorities are based on what is important to them, which, in most cases are true. I base mine according to the philosophy that I need to do what makes me happy, so the people that are on my list of key relationships get the best me possible.

Anybody who knows me, knows that I love my kids and would do anything to help them succeed. What I can not do is focus so much on their wants, not even needs, but just wants.

My priority is to give them all that they need to succeed, because whether they realize it or not, success is what they need to continue moving forward. Someone that never seems to be successful at any attempts in life is given very little reason to continue going through the motions and just existing.

Don't make success a priority though, make the pieces and parts it takes to become a success a priority.

Setting life in motion, with a list of things that are important, by how important they are to yourself and others will allow for other aspects of of your life come together.

When you have your priorities straight, good things happen, if you don't believe me, get them straight and prove me wrong.

Comments (1)
Posted by: paula sutton | Sep 03, 2014 10:39

Thank you for this thoughtful reminder and it could not have come at a better time. 



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