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Constant reprioritization

Every week starts with a great promise, a blank slate, with a plan where nothing has been missed. Until something unexpected comes up.

This invariably happens every week, which is why I leave some room in the week to tackle the things that come up along the way. Nevertheless, doing so usually leads to the slipping of something that I had originally planned to accomplish.

It is never easy saying no to something urgent that needs our attention right away, despite there being other important things that need our attention, especially when they aren't just as urgent. But in not tackling them now, they turn into the urgent ones at a later date. In that sense, we merely postpone and continue to feed the urgency monster.

One of the effective ways to deal with this in a more conscious way has been to constantly reprioritize. When something unplanned comes up that I need to spend a significant amount of time on (usually an hour or more), I force myself to take something out of my plan to make room for it.

When I do this, I'm consciously considering which of the two is more important. And sometimes, it makes sense to make room for the unplanned urgent task by pushing out something that was planned. And other times, it doesn't.

When I don't do this, I tend to take on the additional task with the hope that I can find time somewhere to still do everything I had originally planned, in addition to this.

But that is generally a bad idea as two to three such unplanned tasks can leave me scrambling over the weekend trying to make up for lost time, either unable to accomplish them at all or do them in an unsatisfactory manner.

Constant reprioritization has served me well both at work and outside of work. All it does is force conscious prioritization decisions. 

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