At first glance, how might you answer this question on what you prize?
Do you prize your spouse? Your kids? Your car? Your job? Your relationships?
The nice part is there is no correct answer. But, we’re going to ask that you dig a little deeper and be completely honest with yourself.
When we think about the word “prize”, it brings to mind a picture of cherishing something (with joy) rather than simply valuing it as important.
This question was posed in one of the January prompts in “The Daily Stoic Journal” by Ryan Holiday. Stoicism has had a profound impact (before we were really aware of it as a philosophy) on the way we teach wellness at Live Better.
In fact, “Have the best day ever” is a direct application of choosing to control what we can control (e.g. the next decision we make, our attitude, our resolve, etc), which is stoicism 101.
What Do You Truly Prize?
So, back to the question:
“What do you truly prize?”
Take a few minutes with a blank sheet of paper to write down some things that come to mind.
Here are some things that came to mind:
Specific relationships that I “cherish” and that make me feel joyful
Doing meaningful work to help people with their physical and mental well-being
Combining those two (relationships and meaningful work) into special experiences that bring me joy and fulfillment
Pushing my physical capabilities to explore my limits — this often brings me to unique places doing unique things (e.g. surfing, hiking, running)
Quotes and memories from my grandfather — they are full of life lessons and mottos
Small moments of reflection in nature that help me recalibrate to “prizing” the list above rather than getting caught in the (city) race
It’s easy to know, on a surface level, what we “like” — nice things, good people, a well-paying job, safety and security.
On the other hand, it’s harder to go a little deeper and choose the things that we “prize” — the people, places, or things that we cherish.
We start to realize it is less material driven and more experience driven.
In general, we prize the things in life that create moments (and feelings) we remember forever.
As this next month begins or comes to a close, think about what you truly prize.
Then, focus on those things and make today the best day ever (and every day thereafter).