Prioritizing. It’s one of the hardest aspects of time management. You set aside time to get important work done, and now what to do? Here are 5 ways of determining what to do first when you are ready to get to work.
If you could choose just one thing that makes the biggest difference in your day at home or work, what would that be? That’s the essence of prioritizing and knowing the one thing that you can do each day. On the opposite hand, what is the one thing that if you did NOT do it, that your day would go awry? Either perspective helps you prioritize what to choose that is the most important part of your work.
Getting Things Done (GTD) lists
GTD starts with a mind sweep and writing everything down. You divide the list into current projects and someday/maybe projects. Then your list is grouped by the places you work will be accomplished. That can be at the computer, at a meeting, anywhere and errands. Finally you add the single next step to each of these actions. GTD helps you prioritize by knowing where you do your work and knowing the one next step to accomplish that task or project.
For non-linear thinkers, here’s a way to find your priority. There’s not always a start or end, it’s a context within the work itself. A mind map helps you write down ideas, link tasks that support that goal and then prioritize. By creating a context of what work needs to be accomplished and knowing the many different directions that are possible, you can focus on where you are in the task and project.
The Painted Picture
Getting things done is not the same as getting the right things done. To do this, Brian Scudamore uses his “Painted Picture” strategy. Keep the big picture in mind with the top third of your capture tool, then below add quadrants for quarterly, monthly and weekly. Select just 3 tactics that align with this goal and your projects are outlined for completion.
Choose the one thing you never get started
Intuitively you know what to do and you never get to it. That’s the priority for you. It’s when you have procrastinated and let tasks lapse, you know it’s time to get started.
How to accomplish prioritizing also depends on setting up your weekly routines to follow through. Set up a weekly planning time to establish a big picture view that allows you to establish priorities. That weekly planning time also gives you the opportunity to match your weekly tactics with your calendar.
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