If you have been following my past blogs around the To-Do List, you will know that I recommend separating the Master To-Do list and your Daily To-Do list. But sometimes, trying to figure out what should be on that daily To-Do list can be really difficult. It’s hard to decide what to do when everything seems important, every item has a sense of urgency to it, and it all demands your attention.
However, the fact still remains that we only have 24 hours in our day, and we can only do one task at a time. As scary as it is, we have to make some decisions.
Here four questions to consider when deciding your priorities:
1) Is there a deadline? This is the first question that should be asked, and the easiest to prioritize, if there is a true deadline. Fake deadlines do not always work, so we are only looking for the true ones in this case.
2) Who does this affect? What are the consequences if this project is not done? Who is impacted? How will this affect you? This can be a very important deciding factor when it comes down to saving your reputation, impressing a new boss, or even being a better spouse.
3) What do I feel like doing? This is important because, if a task is boring and you are not interested in it, it will be harder for you to start. The ADHD mind likes excitement and stimulation, not boredom. With that being said, it doesn’t mean you get to avoid the boring task, you may just have to work a little harder to figure out a way to get it done. If you have the chance to start something that is more interesting to you, then by all means, start with that one. Just make sure doing that task is not at the expense of something else that really is more important.
4) What do I have time to do? By simply looking at your calendar and seeing what available time you actually have, you can prioritize what to do next. Even though the idea of organizing your garage sounds fantastic and you are excited to do it, you realize very quickly, after looking at your schedule, that you have no time for this project until next weekend.
These questions can help lead you into making clear decisions that you can stand by. If you are still struggling to prioritize your list, don’t be afraid to ask for a second opinion. I have these conversations a lot with my clients and they're all normal. Talking through your thoughts with someone not attached to the projects, can really help put things into perspective.
Until next time,