We spent the past fourteen months being inundated with phrases like “… in times like this” and “now, more than ever”. As the United States begins to close out the pandemic, the world we used to know will be crashing into us at full speed. Remember the life of yesteryear when you would wake up early, workout, take a shower, attempt to eat breakfast, before rushing and waiting in traffic all before 8 am? You would then work a full eight hours or more and then rush home, maybe participate in a social activity or two. Maybe you would have to rush your kids to practice, before trying to find something decent to eat for dinner. Pre-pandemic life moved at a much faster pace. However, the pandemic, despite being tragic and often unpredictable, gave many of us the chance to slow down and think about “What’s Important Now”.
Thinking about my goals, dreams, and desires is something that I did not make time for in the past. I was in survival mode. Work. Try to stay healthy. I had to balance taking care of my kids while being mindful of my extended family. I was not living my best life. I lived
a life of mundane routine and while considered successful by some, I was not truly fulfilled. While I mastered the career and family part, I had other aspirations and interests. I wanted to travel and experience new cultures, return to school to learn additional skills, and even retire early so I could be intentional about spending quality time with family and friends.
I genuinely believe life is meant to be enjoyed and no amount of money could replace quality time. But how do we do that? Embracing the act of prioritization, where you break down your daily activities and weigh them against your goals is a step towards everlasting happiness and fulfillment. As a retail leader with over 25 years of progressive experience, I hope I can share a few reflections and lessons learned.
As I considered what’s important now, I learned how to slow down and ask better questions. If everything went away, which it almost did in 2020, who would I turn to? What truly makes me happy? And honestly, I did not immediately consider my job, social media, or status. Rather, I thought about my family. I wanted to have more meaningful conversations with each person and get to know them better. I decided to call them more often as well as organize moments where the family across the country could connect via Zoom or FaceTime calls. I cataloged important holidays and created reminders to ensure I would show up as more thoughtful and caring. As I considered the concept of what’s important now, I know for sure that my family brings me joy, laughter, and even encouragement and they have to be a top priority.