It is important that you get your priorities right, both in life and in work, because if you don’t things can become very confusing. Once you identify what’s most important to you, you can then eliminate or downsize everything else.
You need to be asking yourself “Where should I focus my limited time and energy to generate the best results?”
We all want to be happy. We spend most of our lives searching for the combination of lifestyle ingredients, relationships, work, money, sports, hobbies and other activities that will give us the deep down feeling of happiness and wellbeing we seek.
But too often we chase to many things at once. We don’t set ourselves priorities, we think we want it all, and foolishly try and pursue everything. Life doesn’t work like that. You need to organize your life and activities, so that you can get more of the things that you want, by realising less is more. By focusing your attention on fewer priorities you are giving yourself far more chance of achieving things.
You need personal discipline to enable you to be, have and do anything you want and to achieve whatever successes in life you desire which will give you the greatest pleasure and happiness.
You have to place a high value on your time, and continually work at becoming better organized and more efficient. While your life is plagued by too many priorities you cannot hope to achieve either success or happiness.
Too frequently people get themselves overwhelmed and muddled over where to place their time, energy and focus in life, they have way too many ideas floating around in their heads and often they are trying to get to many things done at once. The consequence of this is often they lose track of their main priorities, the big picture they had created for themselves, and they end up heading down the wrong path.
To better understand this, let me paint you a picture. Imagine yourself walking up a very long, steep mountain trail covered with underbrush, trees and plants. You are able to find your way only because you never take your eyes off of the mountain peak that protrudes at the top just holding your eye line, calling out to you giving you a direction to move towards. You never allow yourself to be distracted, although you eat, sleep, and attend to the necessities of life, every day you take further steps up this mountain trail keeping your eye on the mountain peak, never forgetting your ultimate destination. You know that you must never take your eye off the peak, never look away for too long because you know if you lose sight of it, you can easily wander off the trail and get lost. If you do lose your way, you will wander in circles for hours, days, weeks, or even years, taking many unnecessary steps, many in the wrong direction, and there’s no guarantee, you’ll find your way back on to the right track ever again.
It is really critical to spend enough time on the things that matter. Too focus on the right things and expand the time we put into them. When you do, it will make the difference between just surviving and success.
So it is so important for you to understand and come to grips with the fact that certain priorities must take precedence over everything else.
This is what I suggest you do:
1. Analyse how you spend your day. It’s all a matter of paying attention to our daily routine and figuring out how best to use our time. Think about what things you do now in an average day. What are you doing with your time? Most of us never even think about how we spend our time, what things we do, what it is we accomplish. We get up, we go to work, we come home at the end of the day. We’re just going through the motions never really thinking about what we do or how we do it or even why we do it. Now you need to put your life and the way you spend your time under the magnifying glass.
2. Intentionally set priorities. Now it is time to truly do some soul searching and determine what your priorities are in life. Take time out of your hectic schedule to sit down and figure out what you want your priorities to be, at work and in life. What’s most important to you? What goals are most important? What do you want your life to look like? Who is most important? Reflect on these, then write down your top priorities. A way to think about what is important to you is to consider what would you do if you were told you only had 5 years to live? This way you are connecting to what is truly important for you in life.
3. Keep things simple. Don’t complicate things. By keeping things simple you are giving yourself the best chance of success. By focusing on just a few things, you are able to bring your energies and concentration to bear on them, giving yourself the greatest chance of pulling them off. When setting your priorities, choose just 2-3 to really focus on, it’ll allow you to truly embrace these activities.
4. Live your priorities. Take time each morning to remind yourself of your priorities, and to put them into your schedule. Block off time each day for your top goals, so your life will actually reflect the priorities you set. The most important word in personal effectiveness is the word “Clarity.” The most common time waster and biggest obstacle to success in life is losing sight of what you are trying to accomplish, or forgetting what you set out to do. By you developing absolute clarity about your goals and objectives, being clear about your priorities, you are empowering your life.
It’s important to take the time and consider what things you want to do or see or accomplish in your life. It’s easy to get caught up in the rush just to accomplish all your daily life activities and to not really consider what you want to do or have in your life. Once you know what you want then you can take the steps to achieve it.
So set your priorities. Get them right.