I’ve done so many things in my life because I thought I had to. Whether it was a sense of duty or someone’s expectations of me…there are things that I would have done differently if my motivation had been different.
Every weekend when I was a child my parents would take us to visit my grandparents. My father’s parents lived the closest and we would stop & pick up Danish pastries to take with us. It became a given that we would be there and the family expected Dad to bring these treats. My parents both felt it was their duty to spend time with their parents…so we did.
I have friends who stay the course with unhappy marriages or miserable jobs because they owe it to their families to keep the stability. That was the reason that I stayed so long with my company…I thought that being loyal and a long term employee was the responsible thing to do…even though I was unhappy.
What are you doing in your life that you do out of some preconceived obligation? If you took that factor out of the equation would you change what you were doing?
Here are a couple Simple Steps help you determine whether you should keep on keeping on or make a change:
- Determine the Benefits. Do you have an overwhelming sense that your action is good or not? Frame this two ways. Is it good for you? Is it good for others? If both of your responses are positive then don’t make a change. After all if it feels good…do it! If however either one of your responses was negative ask yourself who is more important to consider. If you are then it is time to make a change.
- Decide if you are happy about what you are doing. If you are not but continue to do it because you think that you are making your spouse or children happy take the time to talk to them. Your family does not want you to be unhappy. Tell them how you feel. Ask for their support as you make the change. When you realize that they didn’t care about it as much as you thought that they would the change will be simple!
Only you can decide what is important to you and makes you happy. Either way…the choice is yours. Embrace it!