I’ve always been very organized. I’m good at taking big projects and breaking them into small pieces. I’m good at taking those pieces, putting them in a logical order, and completing each piece until the project is completed. I’m good at prioritizing projects and pieces of projects as to what needs to be completed first, second, etc.
Sounds good, right? Most of the time, it is. Most of time it has helped me immensely in my personal and professional life.
Sometimes, however, I take it to the extreme and it becomes a hindrance. Sometimes I get “prioritization paralysis.”
Sometimes I have difficulty in starting something because I try too hard to prioritize what is the absolute best use of my time. I become a little paralyzed and have trouble making a decision on what is most important to do. During this spell of paralysis, guess what? I don’t get anything done. What would be better? To just do something.
When this happens, I try to let go of the desire to achieve perfect prioritization and just pick something, anything, that I want to get done. It’s something I will need, or want, to do at some point anyway, so I might as well do it now. This has been helpful in breaking the paralysis. At least it gets me moving again.
My preferred method of time management is lineal. Usually I think that the best way is to go from point A, to B, to C, etc. Sometimes that works great. Sometimes a jigsaw puzzle approach is better. Although you can have a plan with doing a jigsaw puzzle (outline first and work in for example) often it comes down to jumping from one area to another as you see pieces that fit. Eventually, the pieces will all come together.
What about you? Do you ever suffer from “prioritization paralysis?” Would you benefit from thinking a little less and doing a little more, knowing that the pieces will all come together even if it’s not in the most efficient way possible?
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