If this is your first stop at the blog, welcome. If you’ve been here before but are curious why I started this blog and what drives me, then you’re in the right place. This blog is all about living our best lives by becoming more in tune with our priorities.
We all have priorities. For some it’s fame and fortune. For others it’s creativity and freedom of expression. Mine come down to three basic things. Family, health, and happiness.
My goal in life is to live in alignment with those priorities, rather than squeezing them in “when I have time” around everything else. I’ve lived that way in the past, and it’s not fun. I’ve made changes to live my values and priorities over time. The result is that I’m living a happier, more calm and content, peaceful and joyful life. My life is now rooted in what I love most.
Who Am I?
I am a mother, a wife, and an advocate of living true to ourselves. I believe our priorities and values should guide our decisions in our daily life.
Living better is something I am passionate about. To me, this means a broad enriching of life. I am constantly trying to grow and learn, find more peace and meaning in life, be joyful and present, find value in the little things, find the fun and creativity in opportunities.
In doing this, I live better day-to-day by focusing more on internal desires rather than external ones. There is nothing and no one that can make you happier. There is no magic pill or secret to success. The only way to increase happiness is by living better, and more authentically, every day. I do this by living according to what I value and treasure most about life.
How I got here
I am no expert; not even close. I have no special training. This is simply how I live my life and it has helped immensely. And I’m constantly learning and finding new ways to live better.
Not too long ago, I lived a normal life; a stable job, decent income, good family, nice house. I was living the American dream complete with a baby and two dogs. But I wasn’t completely happy. Happy enough but lacking fulfillment. It felt like something was missing; like there was something more.
After a lot of soul-searching, I realized I wasn’t content because I wasn’t living true to my priorities. My number one priority is my family, yet I held a job where I couldn’t leave the work at work. I had to carry it home with me.
Sometimes it was just the stress of a demanding, fast-paced industry, and other times it was literally the work that would call me at any moment of the day or night and I was required to answer. I couldn’t just be present with my family always worrying about the office.
Additionally, I had become oblivious to how much extra money we had. Even though I knew we made well above what we actually needed, it didn’t feel like it. The problem was that we just spent it. Mostly on going out to eat, miscellaneous things for the house, and too much on groceries (read: junk food).
We were filling our lives, and our home, with more stuff to take care of and find a place for. I can’t tell you how many pieces of clothing with the tags still on I sold at rummage sales over the past several years. Not to mention all of the appliances whose boxes were never opened, books that were never read, movies that were never watched, and games never played. It depressed us to realize how much money we wasted that could have gone to something much more valuable or useful.
And finally, it always seemed like there was never enough time. For what, exactly? Anything. Mostly it meant no time for things I really wanted to do. And sometimes no time to do everything that needed to be done.
Never enough time to work on that novel I wanted to write. No time to keep up with the cleaning, lawn care, baby, and dog maintenance. (We have a wooly husky; maintenance is the correct word here.) There was no time for our hobbies and interests.
Ultimately, we realized that we were spending hours a day watching television and doing absolutely nothing. How many hours did we waste every week? Every month? It was sickening. But it was because of all of the stresses in the career, financial, and household burdens that caused this. It felt most relaxing to just plop in front of the television most days. I’m sure you know the feeling.
It was obvious something had to change. I always thought I lived pretty true to my priorities, and in a lot of ways, I did. But this was a wakeup call. I realized that there was a lot more going on that was completely out of line with what I believed in.
I believed in taking care of my body, but I had allowed us to slip back into a routine of fast food, processed food, and lack of physical activity. This crushed my happiness and damaged my health.
Quality time as a family was most important to me, but we spent almost no time doing anything beyond errands, cleaning, and watching TV. My family priority was suffering.
I believed in pursuing goals and passions, but my novel sat untouched for two years and Andy had numerous unfinished board game designs. More unhappiness.
Clearly, we had a problem. Shortly after we began working on all of this, we were hit with a big curveball; in five and a half months, I would be losing my job. As the primary breadwinner, this was a huge blow. Luckily, our budgeting was still relatively on-track and we were able to look ahead by a year to see what the damage would be.
Immediately, I started looking for a new job. After a little while, I realized that this was an excellent time to realign my career with my priorities. At the same time, I was trying to hone in a little more on my passions and goals, and determine how I could correct the course that had somehow gone so horribly wrong. Part of that course correction is what spurred the creation of this blog.
Little by little, I’m fine tuning my life to be what I want it to be, and not living on auto-pilot or living the way I think I should be. I’m taking the steps and learning new ways to be better in all areas of my life. And I couldn’t be happier.
What are my priorities?
What defines me is not my career, my possessions, wealth, or status. We begin life with simple values-simple requirements for us to be happy and fulfilled: love, health, family, friends, happiness and the ability to do what we enjoy.
By adulthood these simple values have been repressed and replaced by those artificial ones, generally imposed on us as the important ones by society, media, and sometimes even our own teachers and families. This disconnect causes us to feel unhappy, unfulfilled, and feel as though we lacking meaning in our lives.
Unfortunately, it keeps us from being able to be present in the little moments, find joy in the little things, and truly enjoy the beauty of our life. I refuse to live this way any longer. I choose to spend every day realizing what really matters and trying to make the most out of my short time in this world.
Everyone’s values and priorities differ slightly as we all have a different set of circumstances, goals, and interests. That’s okay! As long as you’re being true to yourself, you’re on the way to living better.
I define myself by my values and priorities.
I value & prioritize:
- being a mother; every little smile, cry, milestone and late night dance party is a joy.
- being a wife; my husband is my best friend and my equal partner on this journey of life.
- my family above all else; we get one family; when they’re gone, they’re gone. Best to treasure it and enjoy it for all it’s worth.
- finding joy in every moment; no one is guaranteed the next one so I make each one count.
- my freedoms and opportunities; I know there are others far less fortunate than I have been at my very worst and I am trying to take full advantage of all I have to learn from and be part of.
- creativity; if the life is a playground then creativity is the sandbox where we can build great things.
- health; we all take it for granted when it’s good. I’m trying very hard not to.
Are you living life according to your priorities?
We all struggle with this. It’s a constant battle to find the balance between the things we have to do and the things we want to do. But, it IS possible to change your habits, create new goals and paths, and live a life you truly love.
If you find yourself in a rut like I was, wishing you were able to live differently, I’d love to help. This blog is intended to provide guidance to live a life fulfilled with family, health, and happiness. Whether it be working to improve your marriage, spending more quality time together as a family, create meaningful memories with your kids, making healthier choices or freeing yourself from burdens and stresses so you can relax and enjoy life more, I’m here to help. I’ve worked on it all in my own life and I want to pass on what I’ve found helpful while I continue to learn myself.
I am following my new path with this blog. It makes me happier, and allows me to become more and more focused on my family and relationships. Making changes to live life according to my true priorities makes all the difference. What I once didn’t know was a problem, is now being fixed, and I want to pass on this joy to you.
If there is anything in particular you’d like me to address, please feel free to contact me and let me know!
-To your Better Life-