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Saturday, January 3, 2015

Preference v. Priority--At Odds or Aligned?

After writing and publishing yesterday’s post, I felt happier, lighter.  I remembered that I enjoy writing.  Good thing I took a break so that I could have that realization—that remembering.  It’s not like I’ve been grumpy for over two months (honey, no commenting) it’s just that there was definitely a change in my feelings, my perspective after taking the time to write.  Which brings me to today’s topic:  Preference v. Priority—At Odds or Aligned?

Given that New Year’s is upon us, the TV and internet are full of tips on exercise, weight loss, and transformation.  One thing I did hear that caught my attention was the idea of making decisions based in whether or not something is a preference or a priority.  Hmmm. . . This idea definitely tickled the brain cells.

A preference is preferred.  The noun implies that this is the more comfortable and more pleasurable choice.  Some preferences might be chocolate, sleeping late, indulgent splurges. 

A priority is something important; top of the list.  This noun implies a goal, an aspiration.  Priorities might include health, family, a meaningful direction of time and energy.

The originator of the idea of making decisions based on preference or priority indicated that these two ideas are at odds with each other.  One cannot have a preference that is also a priority or a priority that is not a preference.  Really?  Is that the way I want to live my life?  Making decisions that are at odds with one another?  It’s the proverbial good/bad, angel/devil dichotomy
Instead, what if our preferences and priorities were aligned?  What if the decisions made daily were and felt that they were preferred and also led to reaching goals—priorities?  This sounds like a much more contented way to live.  I’m going to give it a try.

Beginning with the idea that a priority is for our family to have a Disney vacation this year—maybe even two!  So, our preference is to spend less money on other splurges throughout the year.  Yes, people make fun of our “big back” TV’s, but they still work and work well.  Having our preferences and priorities the same makes for easy decision making.

A preference, for me, is writing.  And, since it is pleasurable and makes me happier, I am also making it a priority—giving time on a regular basis to give my thoughts life beyond my brain onto the page.  Again, making decision making easier as the priority and preference are aligned.

This concept may be more about how one “frames” or looks at a situation, but when we change how we “see” something, it changes how we feel about it.  No more feeling deprived.  Instead feeling fulfilled!  

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