by Time for Success

How to Set Priorities: Weeds, Hinges and Mosquitoes

By Annette Organ, guest blogger

Setting priorities can be tricky for all of us. When we’re overwhelmed, not knowing where to start can often immobilize us and derail our best intentions. Here are a few guidelines that may help you decide where to begin.

1. Weeds: Any task that grows bigger the longer you ignore it.

Weeds in the garden fall into this category. Pull them when they are small and much easier to remove. This analogy can also apply to regular medical check-ups, eating right, and getting the oil changed. Keep small tasks like these from growing into a big problem later on by making them a priority.

2. Hinges: A task that hinges on completing another task first.

An example would be: “I need to vacuum the car — but I can’t until I first unload all that recycling.” The second task hinges on the first. Another example is a laundry basket full of clean clothes (not yet folded and put away) keeping you from transporting the next load of dirty laundry. Clutter piled on top of the washing machine making it hard to access. Any task that interferes with a tool needed to accomplish a goal can safely be moved to the top of your To-Do list. Make these “hinges” the priority whenever possible.

3. Mosquitoes: Unfinished tasks that bug you every day.

Any unfinished item in your environment that you see every single day can drain your energy. Move it to the top of the list. The entryway, kitchen, and bathroom are areas of your home where you spend the most time. When you get a visual jolt of unfinished business, it can be very discouraging. That’s why clutter in these key places can really bug you day after day. Why multiply the annoyance? Make that task a priority.