Are Your Priorities in Line With Your Goals?

You can't achieve your life goals if you set priorities that don't match or that you don't follow.

You may be familiar with Leo Babauta from his blog Zen Habits. However, the other day, I read a delightful, inspirational article by him on another one of my favorite sites, Success Magazine.

Essentially, Leo’s article gives us the three common errors we make when setting priorities and how to correct those mistakes.

The one that caused me to pause was the third most common mistake: You don’t live your priorities.

It forced me to do a quick mental assessment:

What are your priorities (outside of your job)?

  • Health (which, for me, encompasses exercise, healthy eating and time for reflection and meditation)
  • Family and friends
  • Service/Volunteer/Charity
  • Writing, reading and learning

OK, now, does my daily life reflect these priorities? Are they essentially daily habits?

  • Health: I say health is one of my priorities, but do I make time for exercise almost every day? (Remember, even just a walk around the block qualifies as exercise.) Well, no. Do I eat healthy? Sometimes. Do I make time for daily reflection and meditation? Occasionally.
  • Family and friends: Do I adequately meet (and hopefully surpass) my friends and families needs and expectations? Hmm, I like to think so, but I’ve never asked them. (Remember to be careful of expectations though.)
  • Service/Volunteer/Charity: Is service a daily factor? Yes, my job is the most prominent service I provide, but in addition to that, I find other ways to give back to others. A few examples include the Susan Komen Race for a Cure 5K that I ran and raised funds for, became a sponsor for Women for Women International and donate money toward food for the homeless and less fortunate during the holidays.
  • Writing, reading and learning: No, I have not stuck to a consistent writing schedule for this blog. Yes, I do read just about every day. Yes, I do try to learn something new every day.

Wow, some of my actions weren’t matching my priorities.

Since reading the article, I have been much more conscious about my daily priorities.

  • Health: Now, I exercise or attend physical therapy most days of the week. I eat healthy, with the exception of holidays and vacations. When I say I “eat healthy,” I mean that my meals are made from the four basic food groups: whole grains, milk and dairy, fruits and veggies and meats and/or proteins, such as fish, beans and nuts. Ideally, most of my meals should be heaviest on the fruits and vegetables – I’m still working on that. I generally avoid sweets, but as you may remember, my weakness is red wine.Lately I’ve been using my mornings as my time for reflection and meditation. If not then, I use my time in the sauna after a gym class for this.
  • Family and friends: This may be the one priority where I’ll always feel inadequate. There are always more calls I could make, more support I could give and more appreciation I can show. However, all I can do is my best to comfort and support when tough times descend and celebrate and congratulate when momentous occasions arise.
  • Service/Volunteer/Charity: Again, this is another area where there’s always more I could do; fortunately, it’s also a priority where there’s no such thing as “giving too little.” Fortunately, organizations such as Change.org and GOOD help me keep helping others at the forefront of my goals. (I am a member of Change.org and GOOD.)
  • Writing, reading and learning: It’ll take some time, but eventually I’ll find a writing schedule for Tenacious Me that I can stick to.

How about you? Are your priorities reflected in your daily life? Are your priorities congruent with your goals?

Did you find this post helpful? If so, please share it with others. Thanks!

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This entry was posted in Diet and Nutrition Goals, Fitness and Exercise Goals, Goals, Habits, Happiness Goals, Life Lessons, Productivity Goals, Relationship Goals, Spiritual Goals, Stress Management Goals, Volunteer and Service Goals, Writing Goals and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Are Your Priorities in Line With Your Goals?

  1. This is an awesome post! Aaron Keller (from BowTie) once told me, “Actions reflect your true commitment.” And he (and you and Leo) are totally right. It’s not about what you say are your prioties, it’s what you’re actually committed to.

    So while I say healthy living is a priority, but then I scarf down an entire bag of chips or skip my workout sessions for a month, I need to realize (and accept) that health isn’t my priority. If it was, I’d only have a few chips or none at all, rather than the entire bag, and I’d make time every day to work out.

    Thanks for this thoughtful post…you’ve even inspired me to address this in a Procrastinating Writers post!

  2. Laura Lee Bloor says:

    Oh wow, I haven’t thought of him in forever! Do you still keep in touch with Aaron? Speaking of your healthy living priority, have you started nutrition school yet? And thanks — I’ll be looking forward to your future post!

  3. kadee84 says:

    I LOVE this.. that question now follows me through my day. Thanks 🙂

  4. Laura Lee Bloor says:

    Thanks so much, Kadee! Glad to help!

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