DAY 16: PRIORITY SCALE

Most of us are familiar with how to write a ‘To-do-list’. What we may not know is how to prioritize the items on our lists. The idea behind using a priority scale is to devote the most of our time (in quality/quantity) to do what is required at that moment.

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Until recently, I used to measure my efforts based on the number of items I ticked on my To-do-list; Unfortunately, I hardly gave the best of my time to the important things. Now by using a priority scale, I’m a better manager of time & physical energy.

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A Priority scale can be applied in different settings such as: research, business, organization etc. And there are different versions of it. My focus is on how you can use the basic priority scale to plan your daily/weekly/monthly/yearly activities.

There is a difference between Urgency & Importance. The relationship between them forms the basis of every priority scale. ”What is important is seldom urgent, and what is urgent is seldom important.” – Dwight Eisenhower. Furthermore, Importance can be classified into Significant, Relative, Moderate and Minor. Other classifications to this exist, but I hope you get the idea.
Here’s a simple way to prioritize your To-do-List:

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PRIORITY A: Significant Importance!
What you MUST or NEED TO do. This encompasses the well-being of your Total Man (spirit, soul & body)…and cuts across your career, academics, relationships, purpose etc. Not doing these things will have major (primary) consequences on YOU. I tag the items here as my “A-list”. They can either be Urgent and Important or Important but not Urgent.
Suggestions: Communing with God. Studying. Taking care of your physical health. Career Advancement. Starting up a Business. Meeting work deadlines.

PRIORITY B: Relative Importance!
What you SHOULD or HAVE TO do. These are Value-Adding activities, not doing them may have some (secondary) consequences on YOURSELF or OTHERS in the long-run. They are usually Important but not Urgent.
Suggestions: Helping someone in need. Visiting a sick friend. Checking on loved ones. Reading a motivational book. Listening to a Sermon. Having fellowship with other believers. Attending a Training/Workshop. Learning a new skill.

PRIORITY C: Moderate Importance!
What you COULD do. Doing them might help you to save more time/money/energy and provide more comfort. There are few (tertiary) consequences in not doing them. These usually take the bulk of your non-working hours. They can be Important but not Urgent, while a few are Urgent but not-too-important. You can easily delegate them to other people.
Suggestions: Tidying your bedroom. Shopping. Repairing a broken gadget. Cooking. Doing laundry. Washing your car. Having a hair-cut.

PRIORITY D: Minor Importance!
What you DESIRE TO do. There are hardly consequences in not doing them. Doing these things are mainly for fun or to relieve stress. They are neither Urgent, nor very Important.

Suggestions: Watching movies, playing games, attending a colleague’s party, going to the beach, reading novels, chatting etc.

Personal Assessment:
What should I do more of?
What should I do less of?
What should I start doing?
What should I stop doing?

Don’t be too overwhelmed by being busy, your greatest concern is to be fruitful. Fulfillment comes with fruitfulness. It is a common error for men to mistake activities for achievements.

I hope to write more on planning & time-management some other time.

Requ1ne.

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Thank you for reading!

PS: Tomorrow’s post (DAY 17) is by another anonymous writer. It has been titled ‘I STILL LOVE YOU‘. Please don’t miss it.

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