The truth is that I work best when I am just about out of time. I often wish this wasn’t the case, but it is…
The secondary truth that makes that primary truth a reality. I tend towards procrastination. That naturally leads to having to do things last minute… so, that is when a lot of my better work happens.
What Can I Wait to do Till Tomorrow
I often find myself asking this question as I look at my lists of things to do.
Why would I wait to do something till tomorrow when I could get it done today and be finished with it? Good question.
In fact I wish I new the answer to that, because it would be helpful at times to not have to do a lot of things on Friday to finish up my week.
Fighting Against my Natural Tendency
I do believe that there are more productive ways of approaching work and getting things done. In the past I’ve tried a number of different methods, from making detailed lists to blocking clocked amounts of time for specific activities.
I haven’t found the perfect recipe yet. However I have noticed a few elements that seem to line up when I get a good chunk of work done on a project.
First, I work on the things I enjoy first. I don’t actually know anyone who does the part of the job that they dislike first. Occasionally I guess I do the less fun part of the project first because once its done its done! But generally I do what I enjoy the most first.
Secondly I tend to do the part of the project that shows the most outward progress. On a WordPress site this means getting dummy content into the pages and posts so that I can apply a child theme and go to town with my customizations. If I can make changes that I can see, those kinds of things usually happen fairly quickly in my “totem pole of to do lists.”
Thirdly… well, at some point you just have to put your nose to the grindstone and make work happen.
I like a quote that Ashton Kutcher made, this is a summary, but you get the idea. “Success looks a whole lot like hard work…”
Hard work, in its very nature, is difficult. Pushing through the difficult parts of a project, completing the entire thing… that is hard work. But when you get to the end and can deliver a job well done. It’s all totally worth it.
So How Do I Prioritize Then?
I seriously believe that simplicity in approaching the things that need to be done is the best way. If you can write… and if you have a couple of post it notes… you are well on your way to a successful to do list.
Of course there are apps for phones, computers, etc. I’ve tried most of them and although they work, the analog method of writing things down and scratching them out when completed seems to work the best for me.
So here is to lists. I’ve got a bunch of things on mine that need to happen before two weeks from now. The Iron Yard will bring an entirely new method to my madness as far as “getting things done” is concerned.
Make good lists. Do good work!