Do you arrive at the end of the day and feel that you have met your most urgent deadlines, but have not achieved anything important? Do you meet tight deadlines that are off your to-do list? You are not alone.
It's all about how to stay focused on the important things.
The paradox that many face is that our most significant tasks have less likely to have a deadline, with respect to tasks that are not urgent.
So what can you do?
If you have good mental focus, scheduling when and where to do something dramatically makes it more likely that the task will be done.
To stay focused on the important things, it is very effective to assign a particular task to be the only one you can work on for a whole day. Unfamiliar but important tasks often have a learning curve that makes the time it takes to complete them unpredictable.
Big tasks often require incremental progress - if you routinely set goals so high that you end up postponing, try reconsidering your goal by considering halving or reducing it. Attention I do not say diminish it!
Start wondering what is the best goal? The most realistic?
If your goal is still massive in terms of commitment, reduce it further until it seems feasible - once you get started, you can always move on.
Many important tasks involve tolerance of thinking about things that could go wrong, which is a source of anxiety. In general, working on important things typically requires good skills to tolerate uncomfortable emotions.
Recognizing and labeling specific emotions, which make an emotionally challenging experience, is a fundamental and effective step to reduce certain emotions.
You will be able to pursue your goals that involve getting out of your psychological well-being zone if you have high-level skills to manage your thoughts and emotions.
Unimportant tasks have a bad tendency: they take longer than they should. Having strategies for making quicker decisions can help.
When you have an urgent decision to make, it may be better to make a quick decision than a perfect but more time-consuming decision. Priorities must be set for activities that will reduce the number of unimportant emergencies.
How to do it? Start outsourcing, automating, grouping small tasks, deleting tasks, streamlining workflow, or creating templates for recurring tasks.
When we're overworked, it's hard to be clear-headed to see the big picture. Taking more breaks can help us avoid spending a lot of time on unimportant things.
If you're struggling with prioritizing the important over the urgent, don't be too hard on yourself. The number of deadlines and decisions we face in modern life is very challenging and sees us emotionally and mentally busy.
The struggle with these priorities is a difficult task, it is only up to us to apply some of these rules.