At the age of sixteen and fresh in the university, I convinced myself that I was in need of a boyfriend. Albeit not for the most conventional reasons, it was a decision influenced by the conditions of the environment I found myself. What came afterwards was something that would change my life and perspective. When the backlash came, my academics suffered, I hurt people, my focus was divided, and I lost a bit of myself. I learned that my actions, ill timed had the power to hurt me and others in numerous ways no matter how inconsequential they seemed at first.
A couple days ago, I picked up a long abandoned book and the first words that jumped at me were, Always Put First Things First.
While this wasn’t the first time I had been told this in my life, for I am certain my parents (like many others) have hammered this in not too subtle words, today I am able to appreciate it armed with experience.
There is a time and season for everything. A time to indulge in the things that make you laugh, to hang out with your friends or engage in guilty pleasures; and there is a time to labour. Diversions can be hard to detect, especially when they come disguised as social rites of passage and existing norms; or like me the things we’ve convinced ourselves we need; and with so many things and people demanding attention everyday, it’s often difficult to plow ahead with a single minded rigidity.
But focus can be learnt if we pause to think, and ask ourselves what is most important now: enriching our spirit, building our mind, or body discipline? And when in doubt, looking back to where we are coming from to realize how we got to our present position, and then thinking of how far we want to go tomorrow.
Never mind everything else, the fruits of the land never really phase out, like old wine it only gets better with time.