Growing up, I wrote things I had to do but was afraid of forgetting on my hand. I couldn’t forget it if it was right there, right? Well, my parents didn’t love it and turns out in this life stage it’s not super professional. So I started sending myself emails. I couldn’t miss those but I clearly already had an email problem. In the last few months, I’ve been bullet journaling which has been a huge help. I can list everything I have to do and because I am constantly looking at my bullet journal, I won’t forget. But everything I list? It doesn’t have the same weight; it can’t all be high priority or I would go insane (as would anyone).
So how does one prioritize in an easy way?
I learned this trick awhile ago and I have to say whenever I am overwhelmed, I go back to it. But what if I used it even if I wasn’t overwhelmed? Probably wise.
So I take my lists and lists (I’m sorry I just love a to do list, especially when I am crossing things off of them) and divide them up using this.
And then I use this extremely simple table to divide things into four categories: Urgent Important, Not Urgent Important, Urgent Not Important, Not Urgent Not Important. I’ve made one for you here so you can simply print it off (prints perfectly on regular sized paper) and get started: Priorities Worksheet.
Here’s an example of how I filled it out recently. It gives me a clear mind because I suddenly have to evaluate: is this thing urgent? is it important? Because if you know me, you may be laughing right now. Without the sheet and all in my head, I tend to think everything falls into that Urgent Important category when in fact that isn’t ever true.
With a keener focus, I am able to prioritize my lists and cross things off in the correct order (instead of the order they come to mind) and there is no danger of forgetting anything…even though it isn’t written on my hand.
Do you have tools to help you prioritize? Does anyone else struggle with this stuff? Don’t forget to download the Priorities Worksheet.