Do you have a tremendous to-do list that seems to keep growing instead of shrinking? Prioritizing your to-do list can be the secret to gaining ground and eliminating tasks more effectively, but there are secrets to this process that nobody talks about.
Dump Meaningless Tasks
Is today really the day you need to organize all your computer’s files and folders? How are you supposed to get that project done when you’re sorting programs and pictures? Instead of sorting your to-do list right away, take the time to analyze the items on that list and remove those that aren’t needed. Save them for another day, or eliminate them altogether. After all, your collection of paperclips doesn’t need to be sorted by color and size, does it?
Tackle Stressful Tasks First
Your productivity may be slowing down because of a feeling of impending doom. Well, perhaps not doom, but rather a sore reminder that you’ll eventually have to complete a task that causes you stress. It’s time to put your game face on and tackle the most stressful task on your list, and what’s more, you’ll be doing it right away. Pick the task that causes you the most anxiety, get it done, and then do the second most stressful task, working your way down the line of tasks until your list is done.
Clump Tasks Together
Not only should you tackle stressful tasks first, but you should also try to pick tasks that, as the famous phrase goes, “kill two birds (or more) with one stone.” If a task completed will simultaneously complete another smaller task, that can greatly speed up your productivity. Prioritizing tasks on your to-do list doesn’t have to mean taking them one at a time. For example, if you need supplies for one project that can be found at a store that also has supplies for another project on your plate, get two shopping trips done in one go. One trip versus two trips saves you a lot of time.
Time And Energy
Sometimes, prioritizing to-do lists means taking your energy levels into account. The time and energy you have for the day can only go so far, so it may not be possible to tackle larger tasks if you have limited time and resources. If you have several appointments on Tuesday, but you need to design a website for a client that week, it may be best to leave the website building until later. Save those tasks for days when you have more time and energy to dedicate to your to-do list. You’ll do it faster, better and with less stress!