We’re six weeks into 2023, and I’ve spent most of that time doing the same work, habits, and routines. My goals and priorities remained unchanged as well. However, each activity allowed me to reanalyze and reflect on how they moved me toward the life I want to live.
The outcome of that reflection is what I expected: I have too many small priorities that limit the amount of time I can spend on my big priorities. For example, I’ve publicly stated that I want to be known for my contributions to the sports card hobby, yet I’ve barely participated in the hobby in months.
I hadn’t anticipated how many challenges I faced where I had the agency to solve them and make a “better” choice that aligned with my long-term priorities. Instead, I said “no” or ignored them, hoping somebody else would find a solution. The truth is that those problems don’t get solved. Projects stall out, hobbies languish, and routines fall by the wayside.
Like Jason, I’m choosing to focus on five major priorities moving forward though they can and will change over time. If you haven’t read Jason’s posts on Productivity and Priorities, he already covers many of the frameworks I’ll use to succeed this year. It should be no surprise that many of our top priorities overlap.
Without further ado, here’s what I’m focusing on as of February 2023.
- Have a great relationship with my wife. The last few years of Covid-19, college, conflicting work schedules, and generally stressful daily routines had left little time, money, and energy to travel and experience fun things together. With many of those challenges behind us, 2023 brings an opportunity to do more together.
- Live a healthier life. I'm overweight, overstressed, and out of shape. As I get older and see people in my life start having health issues, it's a wake-up call to make better decisions. I've struggled to stick with healthy habits and routines long enough to make them part of my identity, but the sooner I can, the better off I will be long-term. Decluttering and building better support systems will help reduce my stress levels and keep me on track with my priorities.
- Build a sustainable self-employed business. Being self-employed has been an aspiration my entire adult life. I've let too many small priorities get in the way of turning Eko Wave into the business I dreamed of while earning my MBA.
- Make and share. Whether making replica movie props, curating a sports card collection, or building websites, I want to build and share more. I struggled to articulate why building and collecting felt so similar for months. Eventually, I realized that the part I enjoyed the most was the storytelling and history attached to the items rather than the objects themselves (or monetary value). This realization gave me an incredible amount of clarity on why it should be a priority in my life.
- Experience more of life with friends. I'm very fortunate to have amazing friends. I've let a modest geographic distance and busy schedules get in the way of enjoying time with them over the last few years. Between texting more often to check in and planning more outings together, I hope to enjoy more time with them moving forward. For my long-distance friendships, I have PC gaming to keep us connected and wind down in the evenings.
I'll hone these priorities throughout the year and as my life changes, my priorities will change as well. I plan to share the tools, systems, and any other helpful tips along the way.
My first big task: declutter and clean off workspaces.