How much thought do you put into choices you make? I mean, everyday choices, like, am I going to grab food from that fast-food place, or am I going to cook at home? Those small decisions we make can have a huge impact on our lives.
Some of those choices affect the environment we live in. For example, if I decided when my children started school that their school papers were important to me and I wanted to keep them, what is the consequence of that decision? Quite possibly, I'd have boxes of school papers hanging out in my attic, basement, or closet. I may not have the room to do that, and other things that could be stored there are hanging out in my limited living space.
If I chose to spend twenty minutes scrolling through social media rather than folding laundry, there is a consequence. I'll have laundry piled up. That can snowball, right? I can choose to spend another two hours watching episode after episode of MasterChef on Amazon Prime. What's the impact? Maybe I'm not getting something else done that I need to, or maybe I'm not spending time with family or friends.
Other choices affect us monetarily - like the fast-food example I used at the beginning of this post. Or maybe it's the decision to buy a new cell phone every year because you need to have the latest tech. You're making conscious decisions to allocate part of your income (whether you can afford it or not) to that purchase. How does that affect you? In the immediate future, you may not notice much difference. Perhaps you couldn't pay more than the minimum payment on your credit card bill. In the long run, though, those small decisions can mean not having enough saved up for emergencies or vacation or retirement.
Sometimes, we make decisions without conscious thought. Everyone has cable tv, right? Even if we spend more time watching Netflix or Hulu, it's a given that we should have 150 other channels waiting for us. Another subconscious decision? How about needing a new winter coat? You go to the department store and get one without thinking about it. What about keeping souvenirs and physical photographs? You have to keep those because it reminds you of a special day or time.
These choices have consequences. From long-term financial consequences to homes filled with clutter. My point is not to make you feel bad about choices you've made, but to get you to think about what you've always accepted how things should be. And, to think about those small choices you are making every day. What can you do differently today to create the future you want?
Jennifer Raschig loves to share thoughts on creating restful spaces and presenting your best self every day.