How to Prioritize Your Tasks and Activities – Part 1

“How am I going to get everything done?” I must have asked that question 1000 times. There are always more tasks to tackle than there’s time to tackle them. And rarely are you able to complete everything you wish to do. The better question then becomes, “How do I ensure the right things get done (at the right time)?” This is a question of prioritization.

To a great extent, productivity is a prioritization exercise. If you don’t learn to prioritize your tasks, there’s very little hope that you’ll be productive—at least not as productive as you could be. The better your prioritize your tasks and activities, the more your degree of productivity increases.

Prioritization defines the order in which you tackle your tasks and activities. When you prioritize, you’re answering the question, “What must I do first, second, third, etc.? Your ability to answer this question effectively—that is, your ability to organize your tasks and activities in the right order—determines your level of productivity.

It turns out, there are various ways to prioritize your tasks and activities, and in this series of posts, I’ll be sharing them.

The most common way to prioritize your tasks and activities is by the level of importance. This prioritization strategy consists of ranking your tasks in order of importance and tackling them from the most important to the least important.

This is my preferred way of organizing my tasks and activities. But as you will see in this series of posts, it’s not the only way useful way to prioritize your to-do list. In fact, the prioritization strategy you employ may vary depending on your current situation.

The process of ranking your task and activities is reasonably straightforward. You simply list everything you have to do in the day. Then, you ask yourself this question, ‘If I can only get one thing done today, what should it be?’ Then, you place a number 1 next to this item of your to-do list.

Once you’ve determined what your most important tasks or activity is, you ask, ‘If I can only perform one more thing today, what should it be?’ Then, you put a number 2 beside that second activity. And you continue until all the items of your to-do lists have a number next to them.

Now, you get to work starting with the item ranked first on your to-do list. Once completed, you tackle the tasks ranked second on your list. And so on until you end the list (or get as far as you can).

Bear in mind that, from time to time, you’ll have to adjust your ranking because of unforeseen situations. In fact, your ranking isn’t set in stone. Periodically, you may need to reevaluate, your rankings.

Although there are other prioritization strategies, which you’ll learn in this series, I recommend that you should default to prioritizing your tasks and activities by their degree of importance; it will ensure that you always get the most important things done. And when the most important things get done, your productivity increases.

About The Author

Vladimir Elie

I help people learn and apply success principles and strategies so that they can get the results they want in life.