Just Because Something Is Urgent, Doesn't Mean It's Worthwhile

Just Because Something Is Urgent, Doesn't Mean It's Worthwhile

That phrase has been sitting in my head since hearing it a few weeks ago while listening to a podcast.  Haunting the subconscious, teasing out the issues of modern day life.  The phrase keeps popping up while going about my daily life.  The smartphone notifications that demand attention.  The work email that is constantly flowing, the little red bang on more messages than not.

"This is to support a critical initiative."

"High-level leadership knows about this project, and it needs to be completed on time."

"This is blocking a mission critical release."

We all have our versions of these.  Even personal emails are laced with phrases of urgency; “The sale is going to end,” “Act now while supplies last,” “Last chance to save!”  Our world is run through a false sense of urgency, designed to keep us moving, keep us acting, and to keep us consuming.  This false sense of urgency is exactly what gets in the way of us making progress in areas of our life we label as “Someday.”

Every day, this sense of urgency drags at the conscience and makes it hard to focus on other things.  Things I know are worthwhile; a healthy exercise routine, being mindful of goals, setting clear intentions, these all get set aside to tackle the urgent tasks that were presented for the day.  But I've been questioning more and more what is really urgent?  Which of these tasks are worthwhile

It's time to flip the script around and ask if something is worthwhile first.  To trade the someday goals that get perennially pushed aside for falsely urgent tasks of today.  I want to write more.  I want to change the “Someday I'll write a novel,” thought that has been in my head for the last two decades to “I'm writing a novel now.”  I need to write more every day to do that, even if it isn't writing that novel specifically.

I want to trade the "Someday I'll travel more" to actually traveling more.  These aren't impossible goals.  But they do involve changing priorities away from urgently checking email, perusing social media, checking off all those notifications, using the latest distraction app or staring at the TV screen to finding what is worthwhile.

So, what is worthwhile to you?  What is on your someday list that you keep putting off?  What actions will you take today to make that “Someday” goal a reality?  What are the urgent priorities that may be overtaking your schedule can you really drop for something worthwhile?

Need some help evaluating your priorities and worthwhile pursuits? Check out SHFT.

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