We live in a society where everybody is supposedly always “busy.” Way too many people complain about the enormous amount of tasks they have to finish and how stressful the whole process of finishing these tasks is. Even worse, the way people do stuff throws them into this never-ending cycle of constant stress and anxiety. The culture of finishing tasks in the last minute has been ingrained in most people’s minds when they were young students. This is caused by many factors such as the education systems we go through or the way we are brought up and essentially “programmed” by the people that we surround ourselves with. In this article, I aim to provide you with a very useful method to escape this cycle of anxiety and to create the peace of mind you might be looking for.
This principle is focused on helping you use your time not only efficiently, but also effectively. It is aimed to help you identify the areas you need to put your focus on, as well as the areas you can take less seriously at the moment. Going through this analysis of your tasks will help you escape the cycle I spoke about in the introduction. It will help you finish your tasks at the correct time and it will save you all the unnecessary worries and stress you have to deal with now.
Prioritise Your Activities
As you can see in the graph above, you need to prioritise your tasks first. Eisenhower uses the importance and urgency of the task as the measurements of priority. Different combinations of these two factors give you different levels of priority. You can see that the tasks you need to prioritise are the tasks that are both important and urgent, while the tasks that are neither important nor urgent should be allocated the least of your focus at the moment.
Where in The Matrix Should You Aim to Stay?
The most desirable quadrant to occupy in the matrix is the non-urgent, important one. Why? Because you are working on important things, but you don’t have to rush them. You don’t need to stress about getting them done on time. Most people live in the urgent, important quadrant. That is the reason why they stress so much about everything they do. It is as simple as that. If you do things in the last moment, you will be stressed and anxious about the results. However, if you work through things progressively with time, you will most likely not even realise that you’ve been working hard. How come most people live in the urgent, important quadrant? Procrastination.
I wish I could take my eyes out and put them into your head. Procrastination is something you can never come back to when you find out what it really does to you. When you find your why, you will see procrastination as a simple waste of time. It will become so obvious that you will never even consider it as an option. However, most people still have a big issue with procrastination. What does that lead to? It leads to staying in the “cycle” of the urgent, important quadrant. You finish things last minute, you get stressed while doing it and the results you produce are not even close to the results you could’ve had if you would’ve stayed in the non-urgent, important quadrant and did everything progressively.
Take the two diagrams, draw them out and use them to analyse your current tasks. This is the chance for you to start “fresh.” This is the chance for you to escape the cycle of anxiety, make good use of it.
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