Sometimes I wonder If I care too much. I don’t mean whether I love, empathize or give enough to charity; rather, do I devote too much mental energy to trivial issues?
Through my efforts to control the unknowns in my life, I over prepare, evaluate, reevaluate and second guess myself endlessly. But because the result is usually positive, I thought I was doing alright.
However, as I approach 30 I’ve decided to make a few changes. I want to focus more on maximizing one of my most precious resources, my sanity. I created this flowchart to prioritize caring and to keep me from spending more mental energy than I can afford.
The Valuist Care Flowchart
Sure, this is overly simplified but it does help me reduce stress and overcome some of my circular thought processes. And terms like, “makes me happy,” and “improve future” are open-ended enough to cover a lot of additional moral territory. You can also add or substitute terms (Do I like person or animal? etc.).
Testing the Flowchart
Will I get the job I interviewed for?
Verdict: Care – Affects my income, happiness and future.
Will the Broncos win?
Verdict: Don’t Care (within reason of course).
A colleague has a different view on politics?
Verdict: Don’t Care (as long as we don’t have to discuss it)
This flowchart is certainly not inclusive of all moral issues but it does serve an important purpose for those of us that worry. If it’s not a matter of life and death, doesn’t cost/earn me money and won’t affect my happiness or future, how much should I really care?