Can you imagine living a life where everything you ever start gets finished, gets noticed and succeeds? A life where you have enough time to get everything on your list checked off and done?
I’m tempted to say, “Welcome to Utopia!”
In reality, entrepreneurs think much faster than anyone can implement (just ask my team… haha), move faster than anyone can follow and get pulled down and get back up way too often. If your to-do list is constantly way too long and you never seem to finish anything, you’re not alone and I have a good news for you – the rest of this article is for you.
Unlike in Utopia, in “real” life we deal with imperfect conditions. Stuff happens, time flies, technology fails, even people are imperfect. In “real” life it’s important to count with imperfection and keep your priorities right.
Let’s have a closer look at…
Most common mistakes when setting priorities:
Mistake #1: Not thinking about priorities.
One of the most deceitful ways is to not think about priorities. For example, many entrepreneurs work way too hard way too long, neglecting what truly matters – their personal needs or even worse, their families. Not understanding what is important for you in life can actually be the road to winning the wrong things (or people) while losing things (or people) that are important to you.
Mistake #2: Setting too many priorities
This is yet another mistake when it comes to setting priorities. Have you ever had an ongoing list of super important tasks that have to get done …yesterday? Welcome to the club! This is a great way to frustration, negativity and underachievement.
Mistake #3: Lack of implementation
It’s not that uncommon to see entrepreneur to fail. It sure doesn’t happen because of the lack of ideas; our heads are full of ideas. Even though the reason of business failure is more complex, one of the reasons is the lack of implementation. Way too many business owners never take action necessary to turn their ideas into reality. If this is you, you need to understand that without action you won’t be able to create any results. No matter how hard to keep dreaming…
So how can you choose your priorities wisely?
Here are some tips to help you get started. When looking at your list of priorities, consider the following…
1. Urgent vs. Important
Things that become urgent either because we forgot about them, neglected them or someone else is lacking good planning skills, can look like they are important. But are they? I’m glad I’ve learned early in my life that lack of someone else’s planning doesn’t necessarily have to lead to emergency at my end. It’s totally OK to let people deal with the consequences of their own decisions (or lack of them). Is specific task or activity truly important, is it taking you to where you’re heading or is it just urgent?
2. Purpose-driven vs. Busyness-driven
There’s a big difference between purpose-driven life and keeping yourself busy for no reason. I find that way too many people mistaken activity with productivity, but these are completely different things. Are you living your purpose or are you just keeping yourself busy? What is your purpose in life? Is what you are doing still aligned with your purpose or are you just keeping yourself busy?
3. Making a Difference vs. Dreaming
Some people will waste their lives dreaming about things they would love to do or influence they would like to have. There’s no problem with dreaming. Having big dreams is great. Yet, it’s important to also see daily opportunities to make a difference in somebody else’s life NOW. Are you making a difference or are you just dreaming about maybe one day changing the world? To change the world, you need to start where you are with who you are and what you have right now.
Looking at your to-do list for today, where do your tasks belong? Should they stay at your priority list or should they be moved further down to “someday” list? Is there anything that SHOULD be on your list instead?
Question: Do you prioritize your tasks and activities? If yes, how do you choose your top priorities? What tip have you found valuable to your own business? I look forward to hearing from you!
Are you looking for more tips to improve your productivity and efficiency? Check out my Planning For Success, the ultimate guide to planning and goal setting.