Set Your Priorities

This is Part 2 in the Apt Design 2011 Ebook Series – Creating Work/Life Balance.
Click here to get the book and see the whole series.

Now that you’ve decided what you want for your life, its time to start prioritizing your time and energy to achieve that life.

Your Priorities

Set Your PrioritiesI’m big on creating goals, as they can be a great way helping you continually improve yourself and your life.  An interesting addition or alternative to creating goals is to make a list of your life’s priorities. I’ve found my goals sometimes change during the year as new circumstances arise and I want room to make adjustments. So I’ve started making a list of the top 5 or 6 priorities in my life, and listing out goals under each one. The goals are SMART, but they may change or adapt. The priorities are more general and guide overall decisions about how I spend my time and energy.

Reprioritize Your Time

Your time is one of your most valuable commodities. But too often how we spend our time is decided by others. We need to take back control of our time. Its scarce and its valuable – but its yours. Don’t give it away easily.

Knowing your priorities in life will help you rethink your current schedule and how it is set. After looking at your priorities you might decide an extra hour at work isn’t as important as your son’s soccer game. Perhaps watching TV may become less important than working on the fiction book you’re writing. Maybe cutting back on how long you spend at lunch each day lets you get home sooner to play with your kids. However your time is used become more conscious of your decisions to spend it.

Reprioritize You Energy

We all have times when we are full of our best energy. Schedule your life so that this important energy is spent on your greatest priorities. If the only time you have for your family is after you are drained from a 12 hour workday you may need to think about where you’re spending your best energy.

Putting priority on what you define as important in your life will begin to shift importance away from what others define as a priority. Reclaim your time and your energy and harness it to create the work/life balance you want.

Do This Now:

Take out a blank sheet of paper and make a list of the 5 most important things you want to focus on in your life – your priorities. Go and finish this list before you read on…
Now that you’ve made the list of your priorities, make a list of the 5 things you spend the most time/energy on. Consider the discrepancies in your lists and work towards making them match up more closely. It may help to talk these lists over with your spouse or a friend and get their opinion.

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