In this day and age, we all have a lot to think about, we have to-do lists which are as long as our arms, and we certainly do not have enough hours in the day to achieve everything we want to achieve! This is why we need to start to look at our priorities a lot more closely if we don’t all that hard work of thinking about our New Year’s Goals, and thinking about our intentions will be wasted. You already are pushed for time, so we don’t want you wasting any more!!!
So in order to sort out your priorities, you need to know what it is you actually do on a daily, weekly, monthly or yearly basis. So:
Step One: List your priorities
This can be anything at all, anything which takes up your time needs to be listed, even if you do not do it daily, list it. It would be great to set the list out to also include:
– How long the task takes
– How often you perform this task
– Some notes on the task
– Do you like it?
– Is it boring?
– How important is it
– What will happen if that task did not get done by you
– Can it be delegated, or even written off? Etc.
Any information which will help you to determine what takes your attention. Here is an example using some of my own tasks and priorities, these include a few of my old priorities fr the sake of the task: (this should include any tasks you do not currently do but would like too, just ensure you make a note of that)
|Task||Length of time to do||How many times to do it||How I feel about this task||Can anyone else do?||What will happen if it doesn’t get done by me||How important is this task|
|University Work||2 hours per session||x4 per week||I love doing my university work, some tasks I cannot stand as I find the topic boring but overall I enjoy it, I do feel it takes up a lot of my time||No||I will fail my university course and lose the £20,000 I have spent doing it, plus the lost dedicated time I have spent on it already would be for nothing||Very|
|Cleaning the house||3 hours per session||Twice per week||I like the house once it has been cleaned, it clears my mind and makes me feel relaxed, whilst I am performing this task however I am not the biggest fan||Yes||It won’t be done as well, but I guess I don’t need to do 2 big cleans a week only having myself and my partner in the house, this can be reduced giving me more time elsewhere. I can also ask my partner to help with certain tasks which I hate doing, like hoovering the floor||Somewhat|
So as you can see as this list builds up, you can start to determine where you can pull back, where you can ask for help, and what you don’t actually need to do, is it an imperative you iron the household’s clothes on a Sunday? Or can they just iron it themselves as and when they need it?
Step Two: Make a calendar
Make a calendar, split this calendar into days, each day make a list of things you do, from the moment you wake up to the moment you go to sleep. Make sure you mark a rough estimation of the times you conduct these activities. You can do this on paper or on a spreadsheet, or any other way you want too. We will come back to this later.
Step Three: Evaluation
So you will need to put some time and some effort into this, look at this list, I want you to grab 3 highlighters, make a key as to what each colour will mean. You will want one colour for High, one for Medium, and one for Low. Like I said you really need to put a lot of thought into this. Is cleaning the house really a high priority? Or is it a medium one? Reading a nighttime story to your beautiful children, how high of a priority is this to you?
Step Four: Look where you are spending your time
Now with that calendar, you made before, and your list of tasks I want you to highlight each task, If you marked pink as a high priority, and you marked this against hiking with your partner, on the calendar you have made, find hiking with your partner and mark it in pink. If this is not on the calendar then make a separate note of it, highlighting it in the pink, so you know it’s meant to be a high priority.
Step Five: Take a step back
Have a look at this calendar, is your calendar mainly filled with low priority tasks? Is it filled with medium ones, but you want to tweak it some more so you can add some higher priority tasks in there? However it looks, be honest with yourself, are you happy with how it looks? The reason I have asked you to do it this way is so you can see a visual representation of your day, week or month. Sometimes this can hit us harder than simply saying “oh I should spend more time with my husband” or “gosh I need to clean the house a little more” this visual representation will allow you to see exactly where you spend your time.
Step Six: Take your life back
This is easier said than done, trust me I know! So this is why we start with small baby steps! If you have noticed you seem to spend your life cleaning and this is a low priority to you, and you make no time to go on a few hikes and this is a high priority to you then slowly make this change. For example, If you cleaned on Mondays, Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays, yet you hike…never! Then every other Sunday take cleaning off the agenda and go for a hike, get excited about it, plan your route, get lost in the excitement! Your house will not go into disarray because you decided not to clean it on a Sunday. Or perhaps you don’t clean in the week because you work full time, and seem to spend the weekend cleaning, but this is the only time you actually have to spend with your partner. Why not swap a TV night on say a Thursday or Monday (or whenever) make a habit to clean on Monday and spend some time with your loved one at the weekend.
This will be a slow start, and so it should, we cannot just change our lives around overnight, focus on one area you want to change instead of several, once you have nailed this change then start on another section. Hopefully, you will slowly create the life you want.
Yes I know, some tasks like cleaning have to be done, trust me I get you! But should we really be sacrificing our lives or the tasks that make us happy in order to do this? I am not suggesting you never clean your house either, once or twice a week is maybe a nice balance point for you. Or this may be your number one priority, I am simply using this as an example 🙂
One more point, some tasks you will view as low priority, some tasks you will not want to do, but some tasks will have to be done, if you want to lose weight and become fitter, then exercising will have to be added to your schedule, whether you like it or not, the point of this exercise is to add in tasks which will help you meet your goals and intentions, but also about creating balance too, this is what life is all about after all! Add in things which will make you happy even if they are low priority, add in the must-do tasks you hate, clean the house, spend time with your family and friends. Slowly create a balance of life and the rest will follow.
What tasks do you hate to do? What’s high on your list of priorities? I would love to know more! Please share with me below!!
Have an amazingly epic week!!
XO ME XO