I picked out this quote for a post more than a week ago but couldn’t fully articulate why it stood out to me. I’m still not entirely sure that I know why even now, but it’s a quote that’s I’ve been coming back to all week.
To some degree it reminded me of a post I wrote back in April about the disconnect in my priorities. I’ve gotten a little better, but I think two things make it difficult. The first pertains to the whole concept of “life after school.” When I was in school, that was my priority and it was (for the most part) expected and understood. I still made time for other things, but school/work generally came first. There wasn’t a whole lot of flexibility in how I chose to spend my hours.
Now that I’m out of school, my priorities can (and have and will continue to) alter depending on the stage I’m at in life. I don’t always know what my priorities should be, and it could just be because of where I’m at right now. I think the natural tendency is to swap out school for work. Particularly as a young professional, work is obviously important. I’ve never wanted work to be something I do 8-5 just-a-way-to-make-money thing. I want it to mean something and to be able to derive some personal value and success from it, but I also recognize that I don’t want it to be my top priority 100% of the time. Now that I’m almost a year and a half into my job, I’m placed a higher value on finding that balance and evening out all my priorities, whatever they may be.
The other difficulty is that one of my big priorities is relationships. Lindsay actually blogged this week about one of the biggest issues people can face. And I won’t lie – I’ve been on the giving end probably as much as the receiving end of the “Sorry but I’m busy” line. It sucks. (Particularly when you’re passive aggressive like I am, which only makes the situation worse). Because of that, though, I’ve learned to make communication a priority. While I don’t always feel like I should have to (in part because it makes me feel selfish), I’m getting better at flat out telling the middle sister that I miss her and we need to schedule a phone date. Not surprisingly, it resulted in us having an hour long chat yesterday instead of me being bummed and angsty because I want to catch up with her. Imagine that. (And next up is the little sister who’s equally as busy as the middle but also halfway across the world.)
I’m feeling much better about it now than I did in April, but it’s still a work in progress. At least it’s been great to identify what’s important to me and hone my values — like communication. Perhaps I’ll get the hang of this whole adulthood/life after school after all.