I believe that everyone struggles with prioritizing every now and again. Some people have mastered this more so than others, but nonetheless, it does take work. Priorities exist to keep us on track and in some sort of working order, but it can be ok to let loose sometimes, too. As long as you can keep track of when it is time to hunker down again, then you have found a good balance.
When do I struggle with setting priorities? When I have many assignments to accomplish at once. Sometimes I find that I am more productive when I start with the assignment that sounds the most interesting to me because it’ll get me in the mood to work. But, if I have something due in a matter of hours or days even, this “fun” assignment takes away time from the more urgent assignments. Finding balance with this problem has seemed to help me the most.
Here are some tools that have helped me over the years:
- Organizing from most urgent to least urgent.
By listing off what you have to accomplish, you are able to visualize what needs attention first.
- Set goals.
Goal setting is something that seems to be woven through so much of what we do. By setting goals, you can be assured that things will be accomplished in a timely manner. It also forces you to break everything down into more manageable pieces.
- Focus on time.
Recognizes how long it is going to take you to accomplish a task. This can help you to prioritize the tasks that must be accomplished around the same time.
- Find a balance for you!
It is key to find what is going to work best for you. As I had mentioned above, it is important to know when to let loose, but also when to reel it in. Allowing time to do things for yourself is good but you have to understand when it is time to get back to work to assure that you do not lose sight of your priorities.
I hope these tools will help you in the same way they have helped me! With that I say, good luck setting your priorities. Accomplishing tasks is just around the corner.