Today’s musings are brought to you by my hilarious (and a little bit twisted) mind. I want to use a really gross topic to illustrate my point today – one, because it’s amusing to me, and two, you’ll never forget it.
Picture it, you’re at the mall with your two kids and your spouse. You’ve got lots of packages and a list a mile long. It’s crowded, and there are tons of those kiosks with really, ahem, assertive salespeople.
Out of nowhere, you feel diarrhea coming on. (Sorry, I warned you it was gross.)
In an instant, all of your priorities change. Priority number one is to get thee to a restroom, stat.
The rest of the noise falls away.
You’re clear that you’d better find a way to the toilet so you don’t completely humiliate yourself in front of the hoards of people. The things that were previously important have suddenly become irrelevant.
You give a clear, one sentence direction to your husband to sit with the packages and watch the kids until you come back. There’s no negotiation and he accepts your instruction willingly. (You don’t have time to waste looking back to see if he’s doing it the way you would do it – duty calls!)
You take off toward the nearest bathroom. There’s a woman trying to get you try hand lotion, someone hawking chair massages, and someone else trying to convince you that your jewelry needs to be cleaned. You are so laser-focused on the restroom that you don’t even see or hear any of them.
When you arrive at the bathroom, there’s a line. You kindly, but firmly, suggest that you’re having an emergency and would really appreciate anyone who would be willing to let you go in front. Everyone in line understands completely, and gracefully moves aside.
You’ve made it. You did not shit yourself in the mall. Victory!
Your clarity of what you want is a powerful driver in your life.
Did you see how easy that was? How effortless? The next steps were just so clear because, dammit, you needed a toilet.
The energy, focus and direction that comes from clarity of what you want works exactly the same in the rest of your life.
What you want will point you exactly toward what’s next and what to do about it, if you let it.
Here’s what has the tendency to get in the way.
You haven’t yet decided that what you want is the most important thing in your life.
So, chances are, you’re looking around at the aspects of your life – your relationship, your kids, your career, your home, your friends, your activities – as the most important things in your life. So your actions tend toward making that person/thing successful or satisfied.
As long as that’s what you’re doing, your personal satisfaction will suffer. Having a successful business, or a happy family, or awesome kids or a job that helps a company make a bunch of money is never a substitute for your own satisfaction.
But hold on, it doesn’t mean that focusing on your own personal satisfaction won’t ALSO lead to having a successful business, a happy family, awesome kids, or a job that helps a company make a bunch of money, or anything else you might envision wanting in your life. It’s just that your actions are come from such a clear place when you put the priority on you.
You don’t waste energy pretending to care about hand lotion, or wonder if your husband can handle the kids while you use the bathroom, and you certainly don’t second-guess whether heading straight for the restroom is the right choice. (p.s. Your version of this is likely where you waste an enormous amount of emotional and physical energy every single day.)
Why is it hard to prioritize your own satisfaction and happiness?
There are enough reasons for volumes of books to be written, but it often comes down to a a core idea that you can’t have what you want WITHOUT other people suffering because of it. That having what you want makes you selfish.
But, have you ever tested this theory? It sometimes means other people have to learn to be more flexible, or take on things they weren’t planning, but it certainly doesn’t mean they will suffer as a result of you placing importance on your own happiness.
Your turn. All you have to do is decide.
Deciding that your satisfaction is the most important thing in your life changes everything. But, I know that might sound a little scary.
The good news is, you don’t even have to decide permanently. You could just decide to try on the idea that what you want is the most important thing in your life. Decide to do it for two weeks, a month.
See what happens when you crank up the intensity on what you want so that you start showing up to your life like a woman with diarrhea desperately in need of a toilet.
Then decide if you want to keep doing it.
Leave a comment and tell me if any of this rings true, and let me know if you’re going to take on the experiment! I’ll be cheering you on!