Balancing Act: The Art of Prioritizing

dr-seuss

We all have a lot going on, am I right or am I right? Between work or school, home, kids, spouse, friends, fur-babies…it can be a lot to juggle. Prioritizing can be an important tool to help you get everything done well simultaneously keeping your sanity. Not sure where to start? Here are three tips to help get you going!

 

1. Break it down

It’s easy to get overwhelmed when you have a whole pile of tasks or projects you need to get done. By breaking it down into individual pieces, it makes it more manageable and a bit less chaotic.

2.  Sort it out

Once you have a concrete list of things to do, break it down even further: what has to get done first? Sometimes this is hard to do, because you may have things that are less significant but due sooner, or vice versa: a project or task that is of high importance but isn’t necessarily due today. Or you could have some that are both urgent and important. One of the keys of prioritizing is to put the things that are both important and urgent at the top of your list, and go from there. Things that are neither important nor urgent would obviously go last, and everything else can fall in between. I have always found this to be useful whether it was organizing myself in college, or trying to get things done at work. It’s easy to get swept up in the panic, but if you’re able to separate things by importance, you can be more effective in what you’re doing.

3. Do the hardest thing first

If you’re not sorting by importance or urgency, another tip is to do the hardest thing first. Or the thing you’re dreading doing first. It’s so easy to procrastinate when we don’t want to do something, we’re all guilty of it from time to time. But, the more you put something off, the more dread-filled you become about actually doing it, and the less likely it is that it will actually get done. So whatever it is, grit your teeth and push through!

 

Prioritizing can be tricky, and the reality is, you might not get everything on your list done in one day. And that’s okay! It doesn’t make you a failure or mean you suck at your job. Figure out what has to be done, and just take it one thing at a time.

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