Family should be on top of  the list of your priorities. The life essentials list is in no particular order. But if I  can rearrange them to what I think is most important, it would look something like this.

  • Spiritual
  • Family
  • Social
  • Intellectual
  • Physical
  • Career
  • Financial

To some, family would be first. And it is to me, in the physical world.  I have a clear understanding that I need to be aligned with myself and my creator first, before anything. From that intimate and personal place, I receive to give back to my family and friends. Let it be love, peace, joy, or strength. I can’t obtain that with my own strengths.  Impossible.

I’m surprised by looking at the list how this life becomes less about me and more about others. Your list probably looks different than mine and that’s okay. The objective here is to become an essentialist for each category to actually make them happen. One or two goals for each. So, let’s make it count this year.

The pictures above is a family picnic day we did a couple of days back. My wife came up with a non-toxic home made paint for Zoey and we took her our for some finger painting. She loved it. We all did. And you know, I want to do this more often. Not like, once in a blue moon or family tradition. No. I mean make it part of our lifestyle.

I’m always picking my brain with questions like, “how I can be a better father? husband? while being a busy artist and entrepreneur.” How can these two beautiful girls become part of my busy?

I don’t want to be that dad who was too involved. I don’t want to be that spouse who complimented his work more than his wife. I don’t want to gain the whole world, and lose my own home.

I like what John Saddington  said in his list of goals for 2015 regarding his family and traveling:

It’s not that I want to travel any more than I did this past year as I traveled way too much  for my current obligations. Rather, I want to travel more with my family. It’s as simple as that.Many people talk about this but very few actually do it. We’ve decided, as a family, that we’re going to actually do it and make every attempt to do it often. There’s a theory that we’re testing and experimenting with this year and we hope to learn more about family dynamic as a result.

I think we can more or less figure out what that theory is. Soon, I hope he shares it with us. If I take a wild guess, it’s exactly what I mentioned above. How can family become part of our busy?How can we tackle this thing called life together?

We know the importance of spending quality time. For some of us, just separating  2 hours a day with family this year will be victory. Go, do it! Now! But what I’m trying to get at is more than spending time. It’s that level where there’s no need for a family vacation ever. Because it’s happening everyday in fragments. Going out of town will be a luxury.

“Instead of wondering when your next vacation is, maybe you should set up a life you don’t need to escape from.” – Seth Godin

Will this lifestyle require a sacrifice in pay? sleep? other goals? Will it challenge to learn how to say no?

“The homemaker has the ultimate career. All other careers exist for one purpose only – and that is to support the ultimate career. ” – C.S Lewis

My goal this year: As I figure out a my schedule to sharpen the craft in the career and intellectual part of my life, it will be to spend every single night with my girls. With no distractions. When everyone’s asleep. I’m off to work. So, in a perfect world — as we still continue to live the average american working schedule– we’re looking at 6-10pm. 3-4 hours a day. That’s close to a thousand hours a year. Life is short my friends. Make it count.

Let’s continue figuring out that formula. As artist can we make this happen?

[This is part of The Essentials Series]

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