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Feb 14, 2019 22:01:30

Balancing personal goals and social commitments

by @haideralmosawi PATRON | 321 words | 🐣 | 125💌

Haider Al-Mosawi

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I'm currently struggling with setting boundaries between the personal goals I want to pursue and the social commitments I'm taking on. I thought I'd write a bit about this here so I can unravel my thoughts on where the balance needs to lie.

The issue isn't balance as much as it is setting boundaries around my personal goals, and the intrusion that comes from social commitments is more of a Trojan horse than an invasion into my life. In other words, I'm accepting social commitments into my life.

I believe there are two main reasons for this:

1- I'm often apprehensive about the goals I want to pursue due to a blend of perfectionism, fear of failure, and fear of success. Saying yes to other people gives me an excuse not to work on my personal goals

2- I want to be helpful and not disappoint others. I feel guilty about not showing others support and, therefore, I'm not assertive about the need for giving my own goals time and attention. This is something I need to work on because people aren't entitled to my time and attention, and I need to be clear about my priorities and what I feel I can take on.

Having said that, I don't want to experience frustration when I've taken on a new commitment. Frustration leads to mental distraction and is emotionally draining. I need to set better boundaries when it comes to my time, but also in what I allow to influence my attention beyond the commitments I take on.

If I say yes to giving a talk, for example, I shouldn't allow that to lead me to feel frustrated in the days leading up to the talk. That time should be dedicated to more worthier pursuits and to find time in those days to work on my own goals and projects.

How do you handle demands on your time and creating space for yourself?

  • 1

    @haideralmosawi <<How do you handle demands on your time and creating space for yourself?>> Well... I... don't

    Amazing post! Amazing insight! Such a clear thought, so well transferred into writing!

    I could've written EXACTLY that, word by word (just not about giving a talk :-)))

    I.ve been struggling with "my time, my goals, my life" vs "what I want to give" for... ever and in a way, I have a feeling that I'm inadequate in both areas...
    (I just talked about it with @philh, like 5 min ago, and.. I opened your post. That mind blowing, isn't it?!)

    And I can so agree, that (apart from this inner struggle) assertiveness is the key. So many times I had a good plan, actually balanced, and I just were not able to say "no". And the crazy stupid thing is, I don't think anybody else would mind that "no", it's just me being so entangled...

    And <<Saying yes to other people gives me an excuse not to work on my personal goals>> omg... exactly! :-/

    THANK YOU FOR THIS TEXT!!!

    Lucjah avatar Lucjah | Feb 17, 2019 13:05:04
    • 1

      @lucjah Thanks for leaving a comment, and I'm glad this resonated with you. :D

      I'm trying out two different approaches to being more assertive:

      1- Just saying no, without offering an explanation (my cousin is pushing me to do this because "I don't owe other people explanations. They don't have a right over your time")

      2- Having a clear reason to offer people ("sorry I can't, I'm working on a book and I need the mental space to prepare and write").

      So far I feel more comfortable with the second option, but I might need to try the first more often so people don't end up expecting a good reason, and I don't want to get into negotiations (since some people can be pushy).

      All the best!

      Haider Al-Mosawi avatar Haider Al-Mosawi | Feb 17, 2019 21:06:18
    • 1

      @haideralmosawi Thank you!
      Yes, the second is easier (I do it), yet you open the way to arguing and bargaining... the first is like diamond cutter (is that the expression..) nothing left to discuss

      Lucjah avatar Lucjah | Feb 17, 2019 19:49:32
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