Prioritizing what is important in life is something we all do, either consciously or not. We do it in everyday decisions that reflect our priorities. Do we do what we promise we will? Do we check in with our family and friends? Do we do something for others? Do we focus on ourselves? How we respond to these questions gives us an idea of what our priorities in life may be. Of course, this is a quick list of questions that do not cover all things people may prioritize in their lives.
I was taught at a young age to know my priorities. Number 1 priority is family. My father, especially, repeated that to my brother and I our entire lives. He and my mother live(d) it and my childhood and through adulthood, it has been evident. My parents have always been there for us and for our extended family. I’ve not taken it for granted.
A common situation in which prioritization takes precedence is at work. We prioritize what needs to be done first versus what can wait a bit to be done. We prioritize who we respond tAs I said previously, what your priorities are says something about who you are and what is important to you. For almost everyone I know, their family and friends top that list of priorities. Typically, the second highest priority is our careers or supporting our families. Next may be taking care of others. Some would argue that we should prioritize ourselves over everything else. And that’s okay too, as long as you remember that without family and friends, who will be there to cheer you on through the good times and the bad?o first and who can wait for a response. We prioritize our goals at work.
Priorities also come into play with political agendas. Take what is going on currently. Our president has prioritized building a wall over meals on wheels for the elderly and poor. He has prioritized this wall over social security, which takes care of the elderly and disabled. He has prioritized “getting rid of those not like us” that is reminiscent of another dictator over the National Endowment for the Arts. In my opinion, the president’s priorities are not in the right order. But some may feel that taking care of our elderly, our disabled, our poor and the arts are a lower priority than building a wall to “keep out the criminals.” I hope those same people re-examine their priorities as one day they will be elderly, they may end up poor, and they could possibly become disabled. And one day they may wonder why there’s no longer a wonderful show called Sesame Street for their grandchildren to watch.
A government’s main priorities should be its family. A government’s family includes ALL of its constituents. Those people include the elderly, the disabled and the poor. When a government stops prioritizing the people it serves, it loses its focus. And as they said in Monuments Men, what are they fighting for if everything we create is gone? (I’m paraphrasing.)
The National Endowment for the Arts ensures that we have shows like Sesame Street. It provides funding for the plays our children have at school. It provides funding for community theaters. It provides funding for art schools to exist. These art schools are where people hone their artistic talent that entertains us and enriches our world. The National Endowment for the Arts provides scholarships for students. The NEA provides funding in so many aspects of our country’s daily life it would be an almost endless list.
So, thanks to our president and his cronies, my priorities are shifting a bit. A new priority is to help fight their agenda tooth and nail. They will not take away from the poor, the elderly, the disabled. They will not take away the arts from my country. They will not make this a militarized zone where no one can think for themselves. They will not take away what makes this nation so great.
Make it a priority to do something positive for those who are being tossed aside. Donate your money, your time, and/or your talents to organizations that help those people our leaders want to throw away. Support your extended family – your fellow citizens. Support the arts in your community. Prove to our leaders that making these things a priority will not take away from anything, but it will make us better for doing so.