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Lankomumo reitingas Print version Print version
Priorities : Family, Self, Work, Spouse

I have a question I would like you to ask yourself today. Answer the question honestly, without giving it much thought right now. Just give your immediate response, keeping in mind that there might be components to the question you currently do not have in your life: for example a spouse or partner, or children. Imagine that you have all the categories that I describe in the following question. You cannot put two categories together or omit a category. Simply answer the question with a quick response, identifying your top priority (1) from the list below, and then identifying your second (2), third (3), and finally fourth (4) priority on the list. Please answer this question before continuing to read the rest of this article.

Prioritize The Following Four Items:

* Family (Which Includes Children)
* Self
* Work (Career)
* Spouse (Partner)

This is, without a doubt, one of the most important questions you can ask yourself today. It is a question that will continually come forth as you go through life. I feel that it is critical for each of us to have clarity about our own priorities. When you are faced with the challenges of your daily life, I believe that the answer to this question will help you to make better decisions and, more importantly, more conscious choices for yourself and your loved ones.

I have asked this thought-provoking question to thousands of people over the years. It is a very sensitive question that has stirred much emotion and, more significantly, thought about "What truly are our priorities for life?" I have heard many varied answers to the question. In many cases, an individual immediately becomes defensive, trying to change the question. This situation occurs, especially, when two members of a couple discover that their answers are totally different. Unquestionably, I have hit a sensitive nerve with many whom I have asked this question. The question brings out resentment, hurt, emotional baggage, and fear: things that many people have kept hidden from their partners and, primarily, from themselves.

I came up with this question when I was in my late thirties, after I had been through several relationships. I honestly have to say that I wish someone had posed this very question to me years ago. It would have saved me from a lot of emotional pain and anguish. It initiated a change in my priorities for my life.

At this point, you may be asking yourself, "So, Paul, what is your answer to the question?" The priorities for my life are the following:

* Self
* Spouse (Partner)
* Family (Which Includes Children)
* Work (Career)

Why do I put myself in the number 1 position? Quite simply: I cannot truly love my spouse or partner - or anyone else, for that matter -- unless I love and give to myself first. Why do I place my spouse or partner second, before family and children? It is the example of my love for my spouse or partner that is the most important gift I can bestow upon my children and family. Why is family, including children, third on my priority list? Because of my love for them: they are far more important than work or any amount of material reward that I receive as a result of these efforts. Loving one's self, then spouse, then family, makes work all that much more enjoyable and rewarding.

I could devote an entire book to this very subject of priorities. We could examine all the "What If?" situations that pop up daily in our lives, but I will leave those to you. I would like you to think of my answer as a guideline for life. Each and every day, I try, to the best of my abilities, to live my life based on this order of priorities. The results have been truly amazing. Not only me, but also many others have recognized the key role that these priorities play in our lives. Whether or not you agree with my particular order of priorities, I feel it is important that you give careful consideration to the question of your own priorities. In my opinion, how we choose to structure our priorities is what makes the difference between just struggling unhappily through life versus enjoying a loving.

About the Author:

The Art of Loving
"Bringing Love Into Your Life"

"Your Information Resource For Advice On Love & Relationships" Articles on love, relationships, singles, couples, family, sex, intimacy, heart & soul, personal growth, self development, and more. Featuring internationally published, love & relationships writer & lecturer, Paul Mauchline. The Art of Loving also features the contributions of many guest writers, and authors each month.

Information on Art of Loving & Odyssey workshops & seminars, now held in Tamarindo, & San Jose, Costa Rica.

Individual, Couples, & Family Counseling Available By Appointment Only

Telephone Consultations Also Available

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