Priorities

Tulips around town.It has just been a lot recently. A lot of things, a never-ending stream of scheduling and travel and mostly fun things and a few not-so-fun things, and it was getting to the point that I was resenting my calendar. Which is sad, because I love my calendar and to-do list…

But it is summer and I want to enjoy it! In fact, I am staring out at the 85 F weather right now wishing I was outside with the sun baking into me and my toes in the water.

It is perhaps a combination of the nature of the work that I do all day and the service in the Baha’i community, along with my desire to stay connected to all the friends that creates untenable situations in which my brain starts misfiring. My true nature is a mixture of completely social extrovert who only thrives when she has adequate social interaction and a person who needs alone time to recharge on a regular basis. As I get older this is just exacerbated.

Of course this is a life-long process and struggle, but being newly-married (to an amazing man who is really good at having conversations about this stuff with me) is helping me figure out how to balance things and be more deliberate about how I spend my time. This may mean choosing to go only to meetings in the Baha’i community that I know will bring me joy or that I have chosen as a priority, or it may mean spending time with people that I truly feel connected with, instead of doing something out of a sense of obligation.

It also means letting people go from my life who I have trouble keeping in touch with or who never reach out to me. It means holding people accountable when they waste my time or do not respect the service that I am offering. These are not easy things to do, of course!  But the alternative is feelings of pain, resentment, or frustration whenever certain things happen. Here are some things that I have been doing to help manage this process.

Step 1: Make a list of current priorities. This is not a to-do list, but rather a list of the larger things that are important to me this summer. Things like: spending time with good friends/family, being outside, wrapping my head around being Treasurer for my local community, working with my youth group, etc.

Step 2: Create boundaries/the ability to say no. This may mean having someone to talk to about the decision, or telling people that I will get back to them after considering the request.

Step 3: Revisit priority list whenever a request comes up or I feel overwhelmed.

It is working so far and I will just have to continue this process. 😉