How to Prioritize Tasks

Prioritize your tasks. You hear this all the time, right? Do you know how to do it? I think the key to finding out your priorities is to answer 2 questions.

What is your biggest goal?

What can you do today that will have the biggest impact on that goal?

List everything you think you need to do on a given day. Now look at each item, and answer honestly. Does this affect my biggest goal? If it does then it's #1 on your priority list. If it doesn't, then it should be farther down on your priorities.

Grade the items on your list:
  • A: items you must do or there will be dire consequences. Paying bills, writing your quota for the day, getting a deposit into the bank, etc.
  • B: things you need to do after you've taken care of your A list. These might be doing the laundry, gassing up the car, editing your book description online.
  • C: things you'd like to do but nothing bad happens if you don't. Examples, comment on other blog posts, see what's happening on Facebook, checking your email 40 times a day.
  • D: these are "busy work" that you could delegate if you're lucky enough to have someone to hand off these items to.
  • E: stuff that can be eliminated without any consequences.
Takeaway Truth

Learn to do your #1 priority task first every morning. It's not easy when the pressure of social media, promotion, and email weigh heavily on you, but you'll be more successful if you do.

1 comment:

  1. Still laughing about your comment on the post from Thursday. Yes, I write all the time, and filling my gas tank often hits the bottom of the list until I get into the car and freak because I need to fill it.
    My problem is I've left things drop to the bottom of the mental list for too long because I've concentrated on writing, and now I'm facing some household messes that must be handled.
    I had always been a list maker. I'd write everything down and then assign it a number according to how important it was. What I didn't accomplish went to the next day's list and moved upward in importance.
    But now as an author who is writing full time, my number one is to write the next book! Maybe I need to start making lists again. Which room do I start cleaning first? They are all dirty and cluttered! Hmm, something to think about.