How to make choices when everything seems important

Life feels like a crazy chess game sometimes, right?

Think about it: You’re trying to move your pieces around the board – each piece represents your homework, sports practice, family time, video games, or just hanging out with friends. But you can’t move all the pieces at once. The result? Feeling frazzled, distracted and possibly losing at this game of life.

Whether you’re dealing with school deadlines, a swarm of texts, or planning your part in a group project, or just trying to find time to chill and have fun, you’ve been there. But don’t worry. There’s a way to make this chaos less… chaotic. It’s all about knowing how to prioritize.

In this article, we’ll explore how you can get your pieces in order and win this crazy game of life. Remember, it’s not about trying to make all the moves at once, but knowing which ones to make first.

Ready to level up your game of life? Let’s go.

Learning How to Win

Prioritizing is just another way of saying, “Here’s where I’m gonna focus.” Where you put your attention is where you’re going to spend your time and energy. Now, you might think you don’t know how to prioritize, but you’re already doing it without realizing.

Think about it: you’re constantly deciding what to do next in your day. You have a routine (whether you know it or not) that helps you make those decisions. But are you aware of why you make certain choices? Knowing that can help you become a more effective player in the game of life.

Getting Your Priorities Straight

Prioritizing can be looked at in two ways:

  1. Big Picture Priorities: This is about knowing your big goals. Where do you want to end up in the game?
  2. Small Picture Priorities: This is about figuring out the little steps to get you to the big goal. What moves should you make first?

Some people have a clear idea of their big picture but struggle with the small moves. Others are really good at figuring out small moves, but they don’t know what their big picture looks like. The trick is to know both.

Figuring Out Your Big Picture Priorities

We’ve all got big things we want to achieve in life. But there’s only so much time and energy we have, and we can’t do everything. This is where figuring out your big picture priorities comes in.

The 5/25 Rule

The 5/25 rule is a handy trick to help you prioritize your goals.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Write down your top 25 life goals: This could be anything from getting straight A’s, becoming a soccer pro, or learning how to play the guitar.
  2. Identify your top 5: From this list, pick the top five goals that really excite you and could make a big difference in your life.
  3. Prioritize the top 5: Now, focus your time and energy on the top one or two goals, avoiding anything that could distract you.
  4. Say no to everything else: Anything that doesn’t line up with your top goals, learn to say no to them. You’ll need to choose carefully where you put your time and energy.
  5. Review and revise regularly: Your priorities can change as you go along. So, review them regularly to make sure you’re still on track.

Figuring Out Your Small Picture Priorities

Once you know your big goals, it’s easier to figure out the small moves you need to make to get there. Here are two methods to help you out:

  1. The Superstructure Method: This involves sorting tasks into three categories: must-haves, should-haves, and good-to-haves. Must-haves are crucial for your success, should-haves are recommended but not essential, and good-to-haves can enhance your experience but are not necessary.
  2. The Urgent vs. Important Matrix: This method divides tasks into four categories based on their urgency and importance. The goal here is to focus on tasks that are both urgent and important, and tasks that are important but not urgent. You should try to avoid tasks that are urgent but not important, or neither urgent nor important.

Making Your Move

Life can feel like a chess game where you’re up against lots of opponents. But just like in chess, the goal isn’t to respond to every threat but to figure out which moves align with your strategy.

With these strategies, you’ll have a clearer idea of your priorities and which tasks deserve your attention. So, let’s get on that chessboard of life and make every move count!

Your move, champ. Let’s win at life!