Important vs Urgent

Time management is a tricky thing. There are tasks popping up constantly through the day. Other people impose their urgency and schedule on you. If you are constantly putting out fires and feel like you are just spinning your wheels this is for you.

Enter Eisenhower

What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.” ’97 Dwight D. Eisenhower. Eisenhower recognized the difference between urgent and important and he acted on this. By delegating the urgent but not important, scheduling time to work on the important, and doing the tasks that are urgent and important immediately.

Identifying what is urgent and important in your life in real time as they enter your life feels a bit like a ninja skill. Here are few examples of urgent vs important:

Differentiate between important and urgent tasks

– Your cellphone bill is urgent. If you do not pay it on time, there will be a late fee, and eventually they will disconnect service. – Learning how to better invest, negotiate, manage time (o look, its meta), or perform in your profession are all important. – Responding to emails in your business is urgent.

The easiest way to do this is to block off time to work on these types of tasks in your calendar. Protect this time, do not allow it to be the first thing to get moved when a crunch comes.

Create time to work on the important

The Eisenhower system says to Delegate urgent tasks. If you are in a situation where that is possible, great. If you are like many and do not have a personal assistant or direct reports who you can delegate to, there are still options. The key is to think of urgent tasks in the framework of it being just another one of those tasks. So a cell phone bill is another payment, email is another communication, etc.

Build a system to deal with the urgent