Articles and Books
Identifying Your Priorities
by Corrine Bucher
A pang of panic shot through me as I read the email from a friend saying she couldn't come for a play date because her son has his first AYSO soccer practice. It wasn't about the fact that I wouldn't get to spend time with a friend; my anxiety sprang from the fear that my son was missing out on something. AYSO soccer? That wasn't even on my radar. How could I have missed that while I was signing up for swimming, dance and Spanish tutoring?
As a mother of a kindergartener for the first time, I discovered how complicated the start of a school year can be. One of my friends refers to their intricate family schedule as the 'activity matrix'. As a Coach I do a lot of work around defining priorities and thinking about what one deeply wants for his or her family. But in my moment of panic, I forgot that and the pressure to be "the perfect mom" hit me.
Just a few days earlier, my husband and I had decided what our priorities are for our family and ourselves this Fall, and one was, as a family, to have time to just BE and play. So, when I brought up AYSO soccer he burst out laughing, lovingly reminding me of our decision. For identifying priorities is only half of the equation - following through with them is equally important. I've found that when my priorities reflect my core values, it becomes a lot easier to stay true to them. It also helps to have an accountability partner!
I have included an exercise below to help you identify and keep tabs on your priorities. Notice that I only ask you to think about the next three months: Motherhood is an ever-changing adventure, which means frequently re-evaluating what's most important. AYSO, for a four-year old, just isn't for us. This week, anyway.
Corrine Bucher is a veteran coach and mother devoted to transforming the lives of both working and stay-at-home mothers. Her Workshops for Working Mothers, originally developed for a Fortune 500 Company, challenge and inspire women to define their work/life balance vision so they may begin to feel a sense of control again. Learn more and sign up for her online newsletter, Embracing Motherhood, at http://corrinebucher.com.
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