Last week, we began our discussion on getting things under control. First, you started by writing everything down that you have to do. What’s next?

Rank the list

You’ve got your list – it could be 150 or more things. Now assign a number to each of the items. Put a 1 beside the item on the list if it just has to get done right away. Put a 2 by the things that are important, but can wait until the ones get done.  Put a 3 by the things that need to be done but not until you tackle the ones and twos.  If you are like most people you will have more ones than anything else because EVERYTHING is just so darn important and urgent. So, set the twos and threes aside for the moment and do the same exercise again with the ones.  Rank them again now as 1,2 or 3 (as ones).  Take the twos and threes and set them aside.  Now you probably have 15 or so ones.  It's time to truly prioritize them. Of all of these ones which is really number one -the thing that if you did it, it would have the most benefit to you and help you accomplish your goals more than any other item. Which one is truly number two, number three, and so on.

Take the top one or two items. Are these the real TOP priorities for you? If yes, then make a commitment to yourself to get them done in 90 days or less.

Go on a Blitz

Make a plan to accomplish number one and number two in the next 90 days. If the task is so big that 90 days won't get it done -make goals for 90 days that you can accomplish to just get this done. For the next 90 days let nothing stand in your way.  FORGET the other 153 things on your big list -just focus on number one and number two.  Get them done.  Do them really well.  Be great.  Lead yourself and your team.  You will feel fantastic as you accomplish these big important goals. Then review the list -look at number three and number four - make a 90 day plan and get them done too.

It's over before you know it

If you continue to do this, you will have the top 8 -12 items on your list DONE.  And here is the big secret -if you do the top 10 you will have so much gain, you just won't care about the other 140. Oh you can continue to get things done -after all you're really good at this now. :)

 But the truth is, you will find out most of them just don't really matter after all. You'll sleep better, you'll get home earlier, and you will be much more present with your family and friends. You'll even take some time for fun if you're smart.

The big question you should ask yourself now is "Why not do this?"  What is the alternative?  More of what you've been getting?  What could possible cause you not to give this a try? 

If you do try this, in less than a year, you'll actually become a different person, you'll like the way you feel - I guarantee it.

Rem Jackson
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Founder and CEO of Top Practices, LLC
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