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Mastering Prioritization: When being busy hits you in the face.

Last weekend, while I was caught up with chores around the house, my kid approached me wanting to play. I turned to him and said I'd finish up what I was doing, and then I'd join in 5 minutes. 

He sadly looked at me and said, "You always say it's 5 minutes, but it never is."

This hit me hard.  I am the one who professes work-life balance and made a strong commitment to work in a way that will ensure I have more time with my family. But it seems I'm not doing as well as I thought.

There's nothing like direct and honest feedback from kids to open your eyes.

As we're always juggling with thousands of things to do, it is crucial to be able to plan and allocate our time effectively, both at work and in our personal lives. This is a focal point of discussion with my clients, where at least in 80% of the cases, we end up addressing prioritization skills.

The real challenge is finding the right balance between our long-term goals and all the stuff that feels urgent right now. While we always have big ideas and want to focus on the "right" thing, make long-term plans, and take better care of ourselves, we're always pulled in many different directions not knowing what we should focus on. It's like trying to juggle too many balls at once – something's bound to drop.

We're then left with the unpleasant feeling of being stretched thin, facing the reality of a never-ending to-do list and obligations.

The issue of always being in firefighting mode is that there is no balance. I always use my prioritization matrix based on the Eisenhower one to illustrate the point. 

The key is prioritization by areas - making sure that in your day and your week, you split your time to do something in each quadrant. It’s normal in busy periods that 80% of your time is on urgent things, but ensure you take the time to work on the other things even if it's 20% or less.

➡️ What you will see is that once you start prioritizing and planning better, you'll start to have fewer urgent unexpected things to deal with. 

➡️ As you work more on your growth and improving process, you'll see that fewer things will fall through the cracks, and you'll spend less time fixing mistakes.

➡️ Over time, a balanced division in the areas will come in pace, where you can juggle and focus on all areas at any time.

You can use the same exercise to incorporate your personal goals and time with your dear ones. What are the non-urgent stuff you keep leaving out? Is it planning that time off with your family? Is it starting back your self-care routine? 

A balanced focus on all key aspects will mean a more balanced life and improved performance at work.




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