Complacency is something I have never been comfortable with. If I spend just ONE day focused on something that isn’t going to make my life easier, better, or more fulfilling, the day feels like a waste. I’m very emotionally connected to feeling like I’ve accomplished something for the day. If I spend an entire day watching television or any other unproductive activity, I feel anxious, depressed, and unhappy with my progress.

Here’s why:

I have some pretty hefty goals for my life. There are timelines set, action steps to be taken, and other people depending on my success. There are cycles of mental illness, addiction, poverty, and violence in my family that I’m working hard to break. This isn’t just setting goals-it’s laying the foundation for a different future for my children and my entire family. Change is a series of decisions that free me from the chains of the past. Spending just one more day there feels wrong and counterproductive to the goals I have in my life.

One day, when my children are older, I want them to be able to look back and breathe the example I set for them. I want dedication, perseverance, and resiliency to be second nature to them because it’s what they lived. I want them to be able to remind themselves that no matter what situation they face, there is a way to work their way out of it and above it. I want them to value education, human connection, and compassion. I want them to be able to set the same examples we are setting for them for their children and their grandchildren. Criminal convictions, drug addiction, poverty, domestic violence-they end here. They end now.