Why Sometimes We Do Things Out of Obligation, Not Love

Life is short, and the older you get the shorter it seems to be. That is why it is so important to prioritize the activities and experiences in our life that will give it the most meaning and fulfillment. You can’t go back and change time, and thus learning to spend your time now on the activities that bring you the most joy is critical to a happy life.

So why don’t we do it?

Far too often, most of us live our lives engaged in activities that we do not love to do. We spend most of our time engaging in activities we feel obligated to do. It is time that is often wasted.

Love Your Life

We all have some obligations that we have to do, even if we do not want to. We all have to work. We all have to change our baby’s diaper when they poop. We all have to make sure to drive the speed limit. Obligations exist, and obligations can matter. That is why they are called “obligations.”

But some of the activities we feel obligated to do are not obligations. They are choices. And if all we do is engage in activities that feel like obligations, then chances are we are missing out on opportunities for more enjoyable experiences.

Perhaps what makes this an even greater problem, however, is that if we dominate our lives with activities out of obligation, rather than out of love, we put ourselves at risk for the development of anxiety and depression. We need to engage in activities that make us happy, because happiness is important for stress coping, positive thinking, and so much more.

Identify What You Love to Do

You may not be able to completely ignore your obligations. But you do have to be aware when you’re letting your obligations take control over the activities that you engage in within your life. It is important for you to take the time to identify what you love to do and what you will find most fulfilling, and take proactive steps towards integrating those ideas into your life.

The more you focus on what you love, the more abundant your life will feel and the less you will be at risk for mental health challenges. And perhaps even more importantly, you’ll love your life even more once you do.