Why Bother Choosing Carefully?
How do we carefully choose the issues we get involved in? How do we know where to invest our limited time, energy and personal passion?
There is no limit to the number of political problems, family matters, or social quandaries. There are a plethora of “band wagons” we can jump onto, clubs we can join and committees we can commit to. But without discernment, there is the danger of being torn to sunder by pointless causes, or drained to a dangerous state of indifferent.
For some, personal boundaries may sound selfish, discriminatory, or an idea that limits our creativity. But instead, knowing our limits keeps us sane, safe, content and focused. The more perceptive I am about my values, the more honest I am about what I can and cannot do. The more clarity I possess about what matters most to me, the more refined and distinct my decisions become. Choosing which committee to commit to or which “band wagon” to climb up on can be chosen more carefully when I know what is important to me.
For instance, as a young mother, raising my sons was my main concern. For several years, caring about and for them consumed my days. I advocated for their education, defended them when necessary and supported their various endeavors. At times though, I felt constricted with what seemed like the smallness of my world. Going out by myself to do the grocery shopping seemed like my only adventure. But in all too short of time, they grew up, left home and became men. My “Mom” job as the responsible caretaker of children, ended and my boundaries expanded.
Enrolling into school to further my education, broadened my horizons as did entering back into the work world. Since doing so, there have been many opportunities to join committees and clubs, stand up for political causes and volunteer for causes that would make my community a better one. But, I still use my values as my compass. Just because I can do something, does not give me reason enough to do it. After all, I am limited and knowing my limits makes me all that much wiser when making choices to join a club, sit on a committee, or accept a new challenge.
Why bother to choose carefully? Everybody may believe we should be joining their cause, but not every cause is worth joining.