Monday, October 3, 2016

{31 Days} How to Figure out What your Priorities Should Be

When you think of being overwhelmed, do you immediately re-access your priorities?  Probably not.  The entire definition of overwhelm is “bury or drown beneath a large mass.”  That doesn’t scream priority to me.  No, that would scream not a priority at all – run away quickly.


However, I think that there is definitely something to be said for re-evaluating your priorities when you are overwhelmed. 

There are so many things that I want to do.  OK, honestly I want to do all the things.  I do.  All the things sound awesome, and I don’t know why I can’t seem to manage to do all the things…but I can’t.  I need to recognize that.  Why don’t I recognize that?  And why do I continue to add more to all.the.things?  Isn’t the definition of all…all.  So there shouldn’t be any more to add.  But, I do find more…regularly.

It is time to re-evaluate those priorities.

I obviously have some non-negotiables.  I am a mom, that isn’t going to change.  I also homeschool my kids, that isn’t going to change either.

There are obviously places that I can make changes though.  Take my blog for instance.  I have been blogging at Townsend House since the beginning of 2011, and I try to blog fairly regularly.  In fact I had been doing pretty well for quite some time – 3-4 blog posts a week.  I love blogging, it is relaxing for me, to share myself with the world.  However, it is also stressful.  There are deadlines, there are self-imposed bars to clear before a post can go live, and when one of those bars is not met, I feel defeated.  Goals that I want to accomplish, but know they are not realistic at this point in my life. 

I had to step back from the blog a bit.  I was spending too much time concentrating on everything blog related…there is a lot to think about when you have a blog, and it isn’t all fun stuff, unfortunately. 


When I backed off my blog, I felt better emotionally and physically, gaining time to spend with my family, but I still had that little voice in the back of my head say “why aren’t you blogging?!”  That little voice is hard to ignore, but I have had to put her in her place a few times over the past several months.  And I have felt better for it. 

Take a few minutes right now and jot down your priorities, and then write down your obligations.  I’m sure that you have some matches in there.  Those are the first items that you should be listing on your list of priorities.  Then you can look at everything else and figure out whether those obligations should also be priorities.  Or perhaps some of your priorities are actually obligations, and they can be cut from your list. 

How to Figure out What your Priorities Should Be

Just because you cut something from your list of priorities does not mean that it will be gone and forgotten.  There are always new seasons in life, and new seasons mean shifts in priorities.  I am slowly learning that as I age…apparently I have a steep learning curve here.

It is not easy to change your priorities around.  But, what if you could only choose three things, and do those three things well?  What would they be?  When you look at your list through that lens, are you able to find something that can be removed?


How often do you re-evaluate your priorities?  Are there some items that you would like to take off your obligation list?

27 comments:

  1. I like your idea about choosing 3 things. And doing those well. I can handle this goal because I feel like it would be quality and it would be attainable.

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  2. I recently had to step away from my own blog and figure out what direction I wanted to move in. Because I couldn't move in them all...just so much to do and not enough time. I recently quit my job that had me on the road 175+ days a year so that I could be at home with my husband and stepkids. I've completely changed my eating habits and I am just enjoying my home and life so much more now. It was a long time coming, but I know that I will be doing self check-ins to make sure everything is where it needs to be emotionally and physically.

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  3. It's always so important to know what YOU want. Not what anyone else wants, but for you! I think this would definitely help in figuring out one's priorities.

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  4. I need to do this like yesterday! I just changed careers and trying to get everything done is really hard at times. I need to see what my real priorities are and get those takes care of first.

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  5. I agree! Reevaluating your priorities is so important when you become overwhelmed. You have to put yourself 1st!

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  6. I cut back on my blog a bit in the Summer. I love summer and I didn't want to spend too much of it behind a screen! Now it is back to it thought.

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  7. I stop blogging for a while whenever I am feeling overwhelmed. You are right, it's important to reevaluate your priorities when you feel like this. These are great tips.

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  8. I cut back on blogging several years back. Just got into it again a couple of years ago. I retired and that made a huge difference. I'll work on my priorities.

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  9. Looking at your priorities is so very important when your overwhelmed, there are always things that can be let go.

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  10. Heather, I just wanted you to know that I am doing the 31 day challenge, as a sentence a day challenge, so you won't see the whole until the end of the month.

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  11. There are times where I feel overwhelmed by my blog too and I just have to remind myself that it is MY blog. I am not doing it for anyone else and I do it for MY happiness. It is nothing to stress over. So when I start to feel stressed about it, I step away for a week :)

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  12. There are times in our lives wherein we would have to reevaluate our priorities and remove what's not doing us good. It's good that you took a break from blogging to focus on your family.

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  13. I think it's important every now and then that we reevaluate our priorities and what we are spending our time on. It's helpful to see where my time really goes versus where I want my time to go!

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  14. I often reevaluate my priorities to make sure that my energies are concentrated in the right places. It's so important to stay focused on the things and people who really matter.

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  15. I really like the idea of three things. I always seem to be focusing on the wrong things and it weighs me down.

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  16. When my son was in the hospital over the summer I backed off from my blog. I had to concentrate on his health and mine (because I was exhausted staying in the hospital for eight weeks!) and the blog just wasn't important. Great post!

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  17. Understanding priority really makes a big difference. It is really important to prioritized things.

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  18. I definitely think it is good to really write down your priorities a couple times a year to really make sure you are on the correct path. Great post.

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  19. I feel like I'm always trying to readjust my priorities and make my life simpler. At the end of the day I just want my family to be healthy and happy.

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  20. We can always make the best plans but children ( babies in my case) always have something different in mind. Whenever I plan to wake up early, my baby would sleep late. If I plan to go out after making him sleep and leaving him with his grandma, we wouldn't sleep. It goes on and on...

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  21. I did the same before and it definitely helped but now I have a predicament. I am working so many hours that I am getting barely any time for my blog, what should I do?

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  22. Great post! Blogging can be so time consuming, I was just thinking I need to back off and reevaluate too.

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  23. I think it is important to figure out what is important. There is not enough time in the day to accomplish what we want!

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  24. This is a very good challenge and something that I need to do in my life. I like reorganizing my days and figuring out what is the most important.

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  25. I think this is so important! I think sometimes people do things that they "think" they "should" do, but they don't necessarily have to, you know? I think it's great to make a list of priorities and also give ourselves grace if we don't accomplish everything or if we need a break!

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  26. Life happens and priories change. I'm living proof of that lately and making changes to align my priorities with my beliefs and heart.

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  27. Such an important topic of discussion ! Life has its own way of moving forward and recognizing the challenges and working towards the goals are what's so important! Beautiful post !

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