Prioritization with a mindful kick

Prioritization is something I know I need to get better at. It’s so easy to get caught up in whatever chore I’m chasing after and forget that there are much bigger fish out there to fry. Maybe it’s okay to let that suitcase stay packed a little longer, there are Christmas cards to write and they need to be in the mail soon! It’s okay to let the laundry stay folded in the dryer a little longer, I need to watch some videos to study Python. I’ve been so busy chasing a lot of other things, I haven’t done much ‘sharpening the saw’ of my work skills recently, and it’s really started getting to me. I’m used to studying probably 8 hours a week on work-related skills, and recently that’s gotten down to zero.

I haven’t studied for the LPIC-1 for probably a month or even longer, and I haven’t studied Python either, which is big since it’s the main language I use at work and they hired me not knowing any. So yesterday I spent several hours watching videos about the Python language, and I’ve lined up some related coding challenges to do in the next few days. It’s been really invigorating, and a huge reminder that I need to prioritize better. I need to make time to do the important things before they reach near-crisis levels.

And of course, choosing not to do something is as much key to prioritization as choosing to do something. As I’m recovering from this little bout of illness, I need to keep my stress levels at a minimum for a while, so I’m taking another, longer break from the diet. I really want to push on to get to my final goal, but I know at this point it’s not the right thing to be prioritizing. I need to focus on my health, and on my work, and as the holidays approach I need to be able to focus on family. These are the things that I’m focusing on now, and when January rolls around I can re-evaluate, but for the moment I just have to accept that I’ve made huge progress on the diet and leave it at that. And of course not myself backslide!

One thing that helps me prioritize is taking a moment to step back and think, so I can get a sense of what matters more in the long run. It’s hard enough to do of course if I’m in the middle of unfolding laundry, but that just makes it more important to scatter moments of mindfulness throughout the day, so I have a chance to think about what my next steps are — and why. I know I do a lot better overall when I make a point to work these moments in!


It’s hard not to be mindful when you’re standing here…

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