Sacrificing Everything.

1 09 2010

“We can achieve anything if we’re willing to sacrifice everything.”
— James M. Barrie

What are you willing to sacrifice for your dreams and ambitions?

Sleep?  Exercise?
A steady income?
Certain luxuries like reading the news or watching tv?

What about missing your child’s first steps?
Or having to reschedule the dinner with your best friend six times?
Or maybe you choose to sacrifice the pursuit of your perfect dream job for the sake of security for you and your family?

Health, success (a legacy), fortune, loved ones, knowledge, entertainment, the ability to follow your exact passion – this is not a mutually exclusive or exhaustive list, and a person can reasonably pursue each of these categories to varying degrees.

But if you had to choose – had to choose – which three would you write down on the three cue cards that represent the things you would carry with you until your death?

What if I told you that along the course of your life, you had to throw one away, and then a second one?  What would you be most satisfied with having kept you company until the end of your life?  A legacy?  Your family and friends?  The satisfaction of having lived life to the fullest and enjoyed every last drop?  Knowing that you made a difference?  Having followed your dreams?  Being able to die of old age and not a debilitating disease?

What matters most to you and what are you willing to give up when life circumstances force you to make those decisions?

Do you take a few hours to celebrate your husband’s 40th birthday when you already have to pull an all-nighter to prepare for an $8-million company takeover deal tomorrow?  Do you take the time to go for a run when you don’t have enough time to study for your exam in two days as it is?  Is it more important that you play the one gig that may launch your career and give you steady income for your family at the cost of missing your eight-year-old’s dance recital…again?

Where do you draw the line?

We only have 24 hours in a day – how do you find balance?

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[Note: I think what we want in life can, does, and perhaps should change over time (as we evolve through the different stages of our lives), but I think my post attempts to communicate that no matter how focused we are on one of those goals right now, we should not forget to invest time and resources into other goals so that those options (be it family, health, or a dream job) remain possible when we decide to pursue them.

The post reflects my personal frustration with trying to find the right balance right now.]

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