In today’s world control over your own life can become a battle. With technology making everyone instantly reachable 24 hours a day, the constant demands we face to be accountable for work, family, friends, and everything else can become a challenge.
Most people are unaware of just how little control over their lives they actually have. In the end this chaos of multitasking decreases the quality of attention we give each area of our life. Our need to attend to everything, and keep in touch with everyone actually results in decreasing the quality attention we provide and receive from those around us. So reality is our behavior is self defeating and at the end of the day we are overwhelmed with our commitments, stressed to meet the demands of our lives, in need of more quality support, and receiving less. The development of this vicious cycle is taking its toll on people.
So what do we do?
A great way to break this cycle is to examine your values. Think to yourself “What is important to me?”. Some may think of family, careers, and personal goals. Others might realize they never stopped to think about what was important to them. If this is the case for you, then your first priority is to understand what is important to you. Learn what areas of your life hold the most value/importance for you. Self discovery at this level may take some time so don’t be discouraged if nothing pops to mind right away.
Once you have developed your values prioritize them and write them down. This list will be a tangible guide for you. You may want to make copies and post them around the house, or place one copy in an easily accessible place where you can refer to it as needed.
These values will help you stay focused. Knowing and seeing what is important to you in your life will reduce the worry, anxiety or stress associated with feeling overwhelmed and over committed. It becomes easier to say no to trivial requests and demands when we can objectively see how they do not fit into our plan of values. If it is not important enough to be on the top of our list of values, then chances are it’s noise clouding our focus. Expending energy on irrelevant tasks takes away from the energy we have for what is important.
Till then, continue “Discovering Your Own Way”…
– Dr. Brennan