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Priorities Inventory

Updated: Aug 14, 2023

In order to make progress in any life endeavor, you need the right tools for your journey. If you wanted to go for a swim, you wouldn't put on a pair of sneakers; nor would you put on a pair of flippers if you wanted to go for a walk.

Beliefs and behaviors are tools just as important for getting through life as shoes and clothes.

So whenever you make a new decision and maybe don't know where to take your first step, take some time and write a list of everything you care about. If you care about something, you'll behave in ways that get you closer to your dreams or in ways that keep you close to them.

Whether you take stock of this inventory or not, you have one. Some people are good at being aware of the items on their list, and others just like to improvise with their priorities.

So what needs to go on this list? Honestly, anything. The picture above is a generic "big picture" diagram, but if you really want to be effective in your pursuits, you'll want an idea of anything ranging from your beliefs to your behaviors, which includes your identities, your desires, your material possessions, etc.

Here are some examples of each category:

Identity- Progressive, Conservative, Occupation, Family role, Societal role

Desires- Success, Approval, Wealth, Fame, Love, Tranquility, Health, Happiness

Beliefs- Religion, Atheism, Rationality, Empathy, Obligations, Philosophies, Outlook

Behaviors- Sleep Routines, Exercise, Diet, Hydration, Sex life, Recreations, Work

Material belongings- Cars, Houses, Jobs, Careers, Luxury items, Body

The list goes on. Once you have a list, or even once you become aware of an item on the list of "things that matter," you can ask yourself:

  • How much does this mean to me?

  • How much time/energy/money do I invest in this daily/weekly/monthly?

  • How badly would it hurt if I no longer had this thing in my life?

  • Could I live without it?

  • Is it worth the cost?

That's the self-care tool of your Priorities Inventory. Once you have this list, and an idea of how much something on it matters, you are ready to make some decisions! More about that here.

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