On Prioritizing

I own one of those portable stick vacuums. I keep it tucked away in a corner, out of sight. I'll reach for it every other day or so. Usually after I step on some tiny particle of insignificance that sets off my OCD. Working from home has turned me into a neat freak.

It's a decent vacuum. It gets the job done. But lately it runs out of juice too fast, and always at the wrong time.

My apartment isn't too big, roughly 700 square feet. I start by vacuuming the kitchen first. It's always messy there. I'll move on to the area around my desk. That's a high traffic spot too. Of course I make sure to hit the bedroom. Nobody likes stepping on a dirty floor first thing in the morning.

Finally I arrive at the rug in my living room. And that's when the battery light on my poor vacuum starts blinking red. Always at the rug. I could hear it coming. The vacuum's hum lessens when it starts to die. It's effectiveness lessens with it.

I anticipated this, so I rushed through the bedroom, hoping to conserve some juice. I did a half-ass job.

"Nobody will notice, right?"

I get halfway through vacuuming the rug when the apartment goes silent. The battery is kaput.

What I've found is that over the course of a few weeks the rug is much dirtier than everything else. I spend so much time vacuuming other parts of my living space, that by the time I get to my rug, the battery dies. It's the proverbial kick the can down the road scenario. A vicious circle.

The funny thing is that the rug happens to be one of my favorite parts of my home. So comfy to the feet. So pleasing to the eye. Why do I neglect it all the time? Why do I leave it until the end?

It's easy to lose sight of your goals

We all have obligations that we're bound to. Commitments to uphold. And life has this funny way of throwing curveballs at you when you least expect it.

Dr. Ian Malcom
Dr. Ian Malcom

Your battery may be stronger than others, but it will run out of juice. At the end of the day you may find your own light blinking red, pushing your mind to the charging station.

Have you taken care of what's important to you? Have you moved the dial on your goals? Have you vacuumed your rug?

Jake Wiesler

Hey! 👋 I'm Jake

Thanks for reading! I write about software and building on the Web. Learn more about me here.

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