Sorry for mentioning the P word, but I did a little experiment with it yesterday.
My list of things to be done in work is on excel. The spreadsheet runs as far as line 103. I generally have a lot of freedom of choice as to what to do next, but that has had the effect of frequently putting me into agonizing decision making quandaries. (Did I say "freedom" of choice? Huh!).
One of the main complications is that the list covers all of my work roles: client relations, new business, staff welfare, technical, admin etc. When I consider each of them individually, there are always lots of pressing reasons why it should be the one done next.
Context and time available generally suit most things on the list.
To be honest, the decision process was beginning to exhaust me, and was becoming very counter-productive.
In desperation, I tried the following. I added a number of columns to the excel sheet. I headed each column with a reason why the task should be done next: client relations, cash flow booster, new prospect, and so on.
I then gave each item a score of 1 in each of the columns that described it.
A final column totted the scores of each task.
Then I sorted the spreadsheet by reference to the total score column.
The resulting ordered list of items now feels profoundly right. I have absolutely no qualms about going hard at the top items, and leaving the lower items until later. I feel a great sense of alignment.
I also feel that Andrew’s (Andmor) description of book-marking tasks will tie in very neatly with this new list. That is, I will work on the top item until I can get no further, then write out a NA, and move to the next item. I will stay with the next item until I can go back to the first one, and so on.
Very idealistic I know, and I am bracing myself for the cold bucketfull of reality that is coming my way, but damn it, I feel a hell of a lot more inner certainty.
Burn me as a heretic if you like.
(P.S. I am not Brian Tracy)