IMPORTANT leads to PRIORITY leads to PRODUCTIVITY…

The growing season has arrived here. It’s a time where we all emerge from our winter dens and shake off the lazy winter slumber in exchange for a pair of gardening gloves, yard tools, and good old brown dirt. This is precisely what I did over the weekend. I gave our summer porch a good scrubbing. I pulled out the chair cushions and fastened them back in place. I strung our ever popular outdoor lights along the porch railing. I put the planter boxes in their place and filled them with fresh dirt and marigolds. I pulled out the plant pots and got them ready to receive their herb of choice. I cleaned and filled the bird feeders. My chore list was long and the day was tiring but I knew I had to keep the end goal in mind if I were to enjoy the fruits of my labor. That is exactly what I did and at the end of the day, I finally sat down with a glass of wine and enjoyed the accomplishments of my task list and enjoyed the beautiful summer porch for the first time this season.

Our summer porch is the place where we relax at the end of a work day. It is the place where I sit in the mornings and have coffee and read. It is the place where guests are entertained, family gathers and chatter ensues. Suffice to say, it’s a pretty important place at our abode and it demanded my highest level of priority over the weekend.

Daily, we find time to do things. We go to work, pack lunches, check Facebook, unload the dishwasher, check the mailbox, drop clothes off at the cleaners, have lunch with a friend, call a sibling, get our hair cut, shop for groceries, fill up our gas tank, get a manicure, check the internet, cook dinner, read a magazine, check Facebook again, etc. But I ask which of these tasks are important and which ones are distractions that keep us from the important? I always giggle a bit when I hear someone say “I just don’t have time to do that” or “I wish I had time to go there” or “I need some time to relax”. I challenge you to take an inventory of your daily task list. If it’s important, make it a priority and you will find the time to achieve the task. If it’s not important, then assign the task a low priority so that it doesn’t become a distraction to the more meaningful things that you need to accomplish. In business, we like to say “What gets measured gets done”. Let’s not get too critical of our task list that we start to measure our output but let’s at least begin to think in terms of prioritizing our day so that we are the managers of our time instead of letting other things take charge over us. Be the boss!