If you didn’t care about being productive, popular, or successful how different would your life be?
If you only focused on love and passion instead of work and finances, would you be doing the work you’re doing now?
If your main responsibility was to your family and friends, would you spend your time differently?
I’ve been spending a lot of time lately wondering why I do what I do. I often feel pulled in a million different directions when it comes down to how I must spend my time. So I wonder if my life pursuits are worthy of the time I give to them. Your list will look different than mine, but some of the questions I ask myself include:
Why am I spending all this time decluttering my life? Why do I homeschool my kids? Why am I trying to become a minimalist? Why did I move our family to live with my parents? Why do I stay up late writing all these blog posts? Why do I want to write books?
Why Ask Why?
I pretty much live my life in a constant state of exhaustion. Basically, I started asking myself these questions to see if there was something I could give up in order to get more sleep. I realize that’s not the most philosophical method to measure one’s life choices, but it is practical and very real to me.
I also ask why because I want to know if what I’m doing will matter in the long run.
Are Your Priorities Clear to Others?
If you asked me what my priorities are, I can crank out a list as quick as a wink. But if you asked my kids or my husband what my priorities are, I’m not totally confident that their list would match my own. Would your family friends know what your priorities are based on your actions and not just your intentions?
Sometimes life is unpleasant in the short-term in preparation for the realization of our long-term goals. Being on a budget and going without certain things isn’t always pleasant. But seeing a pile of debt shrink over time is worth the sacrifice. I’m currently working a part-time job that I can’t stand. It takes me away from doing things I enjoy. It’s my hope that as we pay down debt and after we sell our house that the job can be eliminated. Staying focused on my goals is what keeps me going.
Leaving a Legacy
When others look back on my life, how will I be remembered? “Oh remember Faith, she only owned three purses. She was a minimalist.” I don’t really want to be remembered as a minimalist. I am a minimalist so that I can make time for what matters.
I am pursuing minimalism and decluttering our lives in order to make time for family. I teach our kids at home so that we have the chance to travel and create family adventures together. I stay up late writing posts and working on books in an effort to show others the benefit of living with less. If something I write helps someone else, then I’m happy.
Why Do YOU Do What You Do?
Take the time to ask yourself why you’re spending your days doing what you do. Examine your priorities. Determine your goals and values. Reevaluating your life often is necessary for your happiness. Ask yourself if you need to change something in your life. Awareness is the first step towards that change. I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments today.
photo by Jamie87
Article originally published on 01/31/2011