Thursday, February 25, 2010
We humans are pretty good at filling our days with activities we think are important. Of course, we need to exercise, take care of the kids, make the spouse feel loved and appreciated. Then there's that whole work thing that takes a good chunk of the day. Some of us get involved in hobbies or church or community events. Because, heck, they're IMPORTANT.
I've been wondering lately if the stuff of our days is really all that important. What makes a thing important? Is going to church important because you did it growing up? Is shuttling kids all over tarnation important because it's fun? Work? Is that only important because it pays for the kids to run over tarnation? What if something that once was vital no longer barks at us from the top of the never-ending list? Are we just modern day images of Sisyphus rolling that rock up the mountain? 'Cause I kinda want more than that.
Could it be that there an underlying thread, woven expertly through our lives, giving import and meaning to our seemingly aimless strivings.
I've written before about my friend Julie and her work as a sport psychologist. I attended her Define and Align Workshop and her Winning Game Plan workshop just a few weeks ago. I have been mulling over what I learned, chewing on some pretty big thoughts. Some of them are so unwieldy I have barely the courage to commit them to paper, much less say them out loud.
She asks: What's Important Now?
In asking this, she doesn't mean we are to address the largest fire and then scurry to the next like the world will end if we don't get to the bottom of the list. And she doesn't mean only do what's important to us as if we live in a vacuum and only our needs matter. She means are we focused on doing what is important. And if not, why not?
There is much freedom in identifying What's Important Now. It gives us the ability to say, "No." How many people wish they said that more often? And there's this sort of heirarchy of needs; once the overall major What's Important Now is identified, it breaks down into every area. If my W.I.N. is to feel fulfilled, and my roles in life are work, family and spiritual life, then how does what I'm doing each of those reflect my desire to feel fulfilled?
The more I think about it, the more my brain spins in circles. I'm not finished writing my Winning Game Plan, but I will say it involves a lot of change. I hate change. Even when it's for my own good. The one thing I have been able to practice in the weeks since attending the conference is asking myself regularly: What's Important Now?
When I can see the bigger picture, I can move with freedom. Now that is something I could use more of.