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5 Hacks For Prioritizing Complex Tasks

5 Hacks For Prioritizing Complex Tasks

The objective of prioritization is to help you achieve results with as little effort as possible. Here are some hacks for prioritizing tasks with no pain.

1.  Use a Whiteboard to List Out All the Tasks You Need to Do

If you prefer to do your own task management, you might find that a whiteboard can be a very effective tool. Place it in an open area so that everyone can see it. It will become embarrassing for you to leave tasks incomplete and acts as a motivating factor to complete the tasks that you list.

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    2. Use Asana

    It is a simple and easy-to-use web-based project management tool. It can provide a macro view of the whole project and allow you to delegate tasks that can be completed by other people. Alternatives to Asana include AgileZen.com, which is a shared task list tool for teams, or Huddle, a comprehensive platform for collaborating on content in the cloud. There are many more task management choices on the web to check out as well, but give these a look.

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      3. Delegation

      You need not finish everything on your own. The fact is that it may only cost you five dollars an hour to complete a task you have been procrastinating on, so why not give that a try? There are many websites such as Upwork, Fiverr.com, and ODesk.com for you to find freelancers of all skills — including designers, web developers, mobile programmers, writers, translators, and more.

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        4. Write Down Three of Your Daily Important Tasks on a Post-it Note

        Place the note somewhere you’re always looking at, such as the edge of your monitor, inside your wallet, or even on your smartphone screen. By doing this, you won’t miss or forget any important tasks.

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          5.  Identify which task is the most important

          It is essential to set a goal before you work on prioritizing tasks. The book Eat That Flog! provides you with 21 effective methods for conquering procrastination and accomplishing more. If you don’t know what to prioritize, you can go through this book to get some ideas of how to get things straight in that area.

            Featured photo credit:  Portrait of nervous female college student with textbooks via Shutterstock

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            Brian Lee

            Chief of Product Management at Lifehack

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            Last Updated on May 7, 2021

            Productivity Boost: How to start your day at 5:00 AM

            Productivity Boost: How to start your day at 5:00 AM

            I have been an early-riser for over a year now. Monday through Friday I wake up at 5:00 AM without hitting the snooze button even once. I never take naps and rarely feel tired throughout the day. The following is my advice on how to start your day (everyday) at 5:00 AM.The idea of waking up early and starting the day at or before the sunrise is the desire of many people. Many highly successful people attribute their success, at least in part, to rising early. Early-risers have more productive mornings, get more done, and report less stress on average than “late-risers.” However, for the unaccustomed, the task of waking up at 5:00 AM can seem extremely daunting. This article will present five tips about how to physically wake up at 5:00 AM and how to get yourself mentally ready to have a productive day.

            Many people simply “can’t” get up early because they are stuck in a routine. Whether this is getting to bed unnecessarily late, snoozing repetitively, or waiting until the absolute last possible moment before getting out of bed, “sleeping in” can easily consume your entire morning. The following tips will let you break the “sleeping in” routine.

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            Relocate your alarm clock.

            Having an alarm clock too close to your bed is the number one reason people simply cannot get up in the morning. If your alarm clock is within arms reach of your bed, or if you can turn your alarm clock off without getting out of bed, you are creating an unnecessarily difficult situation for yourself. Before I became an early-riser, there were many times that I would turn off my alarm without even waking up enough to remember turning it off. I recommend moving your alarm clock far enough away from your bed that you have to get completely out of bed to turn it off. I keep my alarm clock in the bathroom. This may not be possible for all living arrangements, however, I use my cellphone as an alarm clock and putting it in the bathroom makes perfect sense. In order to turn off my alarm I have to get completely out of bed, and since going to the restroom and taking a shower are the first two things I do everyday, keeping the alarm clock in the bathroom streamlines the start of my morning.

            Scrap the snooze.

            The snooze feature on all modern alarm clocks serves absolutely no constructive purpose. Don’t even try the “it helps me slowly wake up” lie. I recommend buying an alarm that does not have a snooze button. If you can’t find an alarm without a snooze button, never read the instructions so you will never know how long your snooze button lasts. Not knowing whether it waits 10 minutes or 60 minutes should be enough of a deterrent to get you to stop using it.

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            Change up your buzzer

            If you use the same buzzer day in and day out, you begin to develop a tolerance to the sound. The alarm clock will slowly become less effective at waking you up over time. Most newer alarm clocks will let you set a different buzzer tone for the different days of the week. If you change your buzzer frequently, you will have an easier time waking up.

            Make a puzzle

            If you absolutely cannot wake up without repetitive snoozing, try making a puzzle for yourself. It doesn’t take rocket science to understand that the longer your alarm is going off, the more awake you will become. Try making your alarm very difficult to turn off by putting it under the sink, putting it under the bed, or better yet, by forcing yourself to complete a puzzle to turn it off. Try putting your alarm into a combination-locked box and make yourself put in the combination in order to turn off the alarm — it’s annoying, but extremely effective!

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            Get into a routine

            Getting up at 5:00 AM is much easier if you are doing it Monday through Friday rather than sporadically during the week. I recommend setting an alarm once that repeats everyday. Also, going to bed at about the same time every night is an important factor to having a productive morning. Learn how much sleep you need to get in order to not feel exhausted the following day. Some people can get by on 4-6 hours while most need 7-8.

            Have a reason

            Make sure you have a specific reason to get up in the morning. Getting up at 5:00 AM just for the heck of it is a lot more difficult than if you are getting up early to plan your day, pay bills, go for a jog, get an early start on work, etc. I recommend finding something you want to do for yourself in the morning. It will be a lot easier to get up if you are guaranteed to do something fun for yourself — compare this to going on vacation. You probably have no problem waking up very early on vacation or during holidays. My goal every morning is to bring that excitement to the day by doing something fun for myself.

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            As I previously mentioned, I have been using these tips for a very long time. Joining the world of early-risers has been a great decision. I feel less stressed, I get more done, and I feel happier than I did when I was a late-riser. If you follow these tips you can become an early-riser, too. Do you have any tips that I didn’t mention? What works best for you? Let us know in the comments.

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