Monday, April 14, 2014

How I Prioritize My Tasks

If you've been around my blog and fanpage for the last month or so you noticed that I have new products weekly, projects in progress and some solo layouts once in a while. It is something new for me. I didn't use to be that productive in the past. Some friends have been asking me how I have things done, that's why I decided to share my organization process.

image from design you trust.


First of all, it is important to understand your goals. Some people may think it's too much concern for a hobby, but we know how frustrating is the feeling of being behind or not accomplishing things we would like to. And there is also the comparison we do with other scrapbookers, it seems like we are the only ones who cannot have things done, right? Believe me when I say you're not! 

But you can have more things done if you stop for a while to think of your goals. Lynnette has posted a very good tip on finding the reasons we scrapbook for on Kick Ass Scrapbooking, I suggest you read her post and take the task - it won't take long. Just remember to come back for the next step.


As she said, understanding your reasons make your decision making easier. Now that you understand your reasons, you can be more true to yourself when writing down what you want to do. The second step is to write down a list of things you want to accomplish, it doesn't matter how difficult, big or expensive it is. If you want to do it someday, put it there.

If you are like me, you probably have a huge list and once in a while you are going to add something new to the list and that's ok. This list will be a reminder, so you don't need to keep an idea in mind, when you put it to paper you can free your brain for important things.


For me, next step is to separate my list into categories, I use only two because it simplifies my life: BLOG and JBS, but you can create as many as you like. BLOG: includes all scrapbooking projects & layouts, other craft & projects, tutorials & random posting scrapbooking related, and JBS: includes any product, service, advertising and creative team management for JB Studio.


Now it is moment to prioritize, as you saw I try to keep things simple and it is also a rule for this step. I use only numbers: 1 Must Do, 2 Can Wait, and 3 It's OK not to do now. After that I separate all items in three sheets of paper and again I prioritize because usually the list is still big and I know I can't commit to so many things at the same time.

How to know which items should be numbered 1, 2 or 3? Bearing your reasons in mind makes this task much easier.


If some of the items in Priority 1 are big, I break them down in small steps so I don't feel overwhelmed. The advantage is that I can make a small step in a short period of time, if I didn't break it down I would probably wait for a moment when I could start to finish and never get to this point and then just give up on that loved project I wanted to accomplish and end up feeling frustrated.


At this point, I add the small steps to my appointment book considering how long each one will take me and how much time I have available. Every task completed is crossed off my appointment book and I can enjoy the feeling of accomplishment. It is by far the best part!


I take steps 2 to 4 monthly or every other month because I revise things that are now priorities since life changes and projects in list 1 Must Do are crossed off and I can (re)categorize and find new items to add to it. This is a good moment to also check if projects in progress are ok or need to be revised.

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