A lot of people talk about the importance of priorities. Parents and school teachers tell kids they should sort out their priorities. Actually though I think most people are functioning well below their maximum ability to prioritize. I mean, to prioritize could be like, putting 25% energy and focus on something and another 25% energy and focus on something else ect, but that is actual a weak system of propriety because it spreads your energy so thin. This is only useful if you really do need to work on multiple things in order to survive for instance. Usually though it will be like, 25% on video games, 25% on girl friend, 25% on school, 10% face book, and the last 15% on being healthy(the actual work that goes into survival, for which most is automatically prioritize, hunger, thirst, ect)
If these people were to prioritize like, 80% on school and 20% on health(incl socializing), I think they would get straight A’s in school. However most people wouldn’t want to prioritize themselves that way. At least not in North America. At the same time though, they will usually have goals in each area like, get a hot GF, get A’s in school, Be a pro gamer. These goals, at least A’s in school, and Pro gamer, take 80% priority.
The reason why people think they don’t have the discipline to do something like get A’s is because they think they don’t have the mental strength but actually it has nothing to do with mental strength, it has to do with priorities. You could say priorities and focus are the same thing. Focus is like how sharp your knife is. If you have more than one focus, you knife is blunt and can’t cut anything, if you have one single focus, your knife is razor sharp and can cut through anything. Discipline which some people say is remembering what you want is the same as well in that you have to have focus/the right system of priorities, to remember what you want. Distraction is the opposite of remembering what you want, the opposite of discipline, because it makes you forget your main goal for some other distracting goal that is less important.
So if you look at it this way, since priorities are actually a choice, and discipline is simply your system of priorities and your vigilance to removing and avoiding distractions, discipline is actually 100% a choice. You have to decide how to ration your priorities, your focus, and your main focus should be what is most important and it should be based on something meaningful to you not based on what other people think is cool or just based on some short term inspiration. In other words, in order to choose what to prioritize at 80% focus, you will have to find something worthy of that level of focus and you will have to reason with yourself that it is worth it and that it must be priority first, now, and any other goal should be seen as worthless as a present goal compared to this goal right now.
My example, the major desires in my life right now are to make the wold a better place and to be free to do what I want. Lately I have been deeply inspired students who do very well in school. Not just because of the grades or their potential to earn money but because on average they seem to come from more stable homes. Their parents instill very healthy values onto them from a young age, one of these being work. This is on average, there was a statistic I read somewhere about it but my own experiences with these students seem to agree with those statistics.
This isn’t to say that the more money you have the better a person you will become, but it is to say that parents who have a better system of priorities allowing them to learn and earn more, are also better parents on average. I think it would make sense that someone who wanted to have kids eventually and also knew how to prioritize would make sure they had more money to help raise the kids and that they would make their children their priority in a better way, when it came time to actually having kids.
Therefore I think that the knowledge to set proper priorities is actually deeply connected to mental health of the individual and their offspring and that time should be invested in developing the understanding of how to prioritize effectively and the benefits of it.
Another small point I would like to mention is that I think that once a priority is focused on for a long time, maybe 21 days, maybe 60+ days, that that priority becomes a habit and may take less focus to maintain the same effort, allowing someone to focus on a new goal(not with the same intensity or for the same duration, but at least actively focusing on it. However if you give 80% priority to a goal, even if it does become habit, you wont have much time left in a day to work on another goal and if you take time for energy from the 80% goal and use it on the other goal you actually change the percentage of the priority. So if you give one goal your all, like everything beside eating, sleeping, maybe lunch with friends and some conversation with family, I would say that one goal has 80% priority, or 100% of available priority meaning what doesn’t cut into you health. Out of the 100% of what doesn’t cut into your health, if after it becomes a habit to work with that amount of focus, if you take some focus away for another small goal, or more time with family it would be a bit more doable at this point because the habit of priority is already in place. Meaning once you learn to focus 80% total priority on a goal, understand the need to sacrifice less important goals so you achieve one thing you want instead of none, you have the habit. Then to lower the priority a bit is more ok cause you still know how to make the hard choices because you know why you have to make them and what to choose.
So the why is because if you try to split your energy in halves or quarters you will be getting halves and quarters of the results in each area instead of 100% results in one area. In some cases this would equate to having a whole bunch of things that your are sub par or average in even though they are all things you really want. This can suck if you want to be good at all those things. The solution is to master at one of them at a time. This way you feel accomplishment(very important for motivation) and you reap the fruits of the labor of doing something to 100% which in many cases is very good fruit indeed.
The how is by choosing the goal and sacrificing any others, for now, until you get the results you want in the one goal. Also avoid distraction and remove it from your environment as much as possible. Also make your environment one where you are immersed in things related to your goal. This will do the opposite of distraction. Also be healthy otherwise so you can give your all in work towards your goal.
The what, will be different for different people. For me, I know I want to make the world a better place and I actually am with this blog I think. Also I would like to write more stories and other art in the same vein. First though I want to get my freedom. In North America I am free, free to get my freedom, but I still have to get it. I have to work for it. I want to be free to work on my art, help people, be surrounded by good people, raise a family right, and enjoy life. I see immigrants from Asian countries who come here to study as well as people born here who went to good schools. They have more money than me and therefore more freedom, and they are doing well and that is something I want for myself. It’s like the backdrop I want for all my other goals. It’s just more healthy and conducive to art to be in that type of environment. I want to be working on my other goals in a good environment. So yes I have goals that may seem extremely passionate and grand, but to get there I have to make money a priority. This isn’t the same as wanting to make money to gain acceptance from parents or to win a trophy wife. This is making money to build a better life and I think that is a reason that many people don’t take seriously enough although it is extremely serious. It deserves 100% priority. I have seen both the good life and a a so good life so I know that I want the good life. That “what” is my priority and I think it should be the priority of anyone else who is looking for a good job. So I home my thought process of why this is my “what” is clear, cause knowing how to get the best “what” is important.
If you have any questions please write them in the comments.
Actually a quick edit, I think it’s not just money that is the issue, there are also a few relationships I could try to fix. It will take a very positive attitude but relationships are a huge part of health and to avoid fixing bad relationships and going for money instead may not be the best way to go. So I still have a decision to make but the overall priority is having a very health enriching life and environment in which I will bring kinds of creation that will benefit the rest of the world.