This is probably one of those questions I should ask myself more frequently than I do. I get caught up in day-to-day life. Work, school, paying bills... These things occupy my attention. Laundry needs to be done, the floors always need to be cleaned, something could always be more organized. But are these things important to me? No, not really. Should they be? No. So why do chores and money get the most of my thoughts and attention?
I love organizing, don't get me wrong. There's a very satisfactory feeling I get while organizing as well as after I'm done. And it's not terrible and boring to me; I actually enjoy it. It bothers me when things aren't organized. It grates on me, and I can't get it out of my mind. There's this little nagging voice saying, "Your duvet is going to get dusty if you don't get an airtight bin and put it in there. The closet needs to be organized. Have you seen your pantry in the last month?" These voices get heard, these issues get resolved. But how often does an emotional issue get prioritized like that?
I just picked up Richard Paul Evans' "The Walk" today at Barnes and Noble. I'm already about halfway through. It's one of the books with a wonderful story, but that also really makes you take a look at your life. The premise of the book follows a twenty or thirty-something advertising executive that loses everything important to him, and in a desperate grasp decides to walk from the state of Washington to Key West, Florida. This is not just a physical journey, it is an emotional one. He begins his actual walk midway through novel, and that is where I currently am. And I'm already re-evaluating my priorities.
To take a step back and look at my life through another's eyes is not easy. But when I look at my life and see where my priorities lie, it almost disgusts me. I put so much effort into things that won't really matter in the long run. Instead of focusing on my relationships with those I love, I allow work and housework to get in the way. Those things get my priorities. They shouldn't. And my goal is to alleviate this problem as quickly as I can.
No matter what career path I choose, it will always be a job. It may be rewarding and encouraging, but it will still be a job. From now on, I hope find ways to work on the relationships that mean the most to me. If an outsider looks at my life, I don't want it to look like my priorities aren't with my loved ones.
It's a pretty phenomenal book to make me think this deeply and this much while only being 160 pages in. It doesn't matter how it ends at this point; the journey is truly the most important part.
A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step. I may not have so far, but from this step on I will finally begin to smell the roses-- and honeysuckle, too.