Priorities and Time Management.

Last Christmas break (wow – nine months ago!) I watched Laura Vanderkam’s great 11-minute TED talk on “How to gain control of your free time”.

Rather than say “I don’t have time to do x, y or z,” she would say “I don’t do x, y or z because it’s not a priority.” “I don’t have time,” often means “It’s not a priority.”


[B]ut I want you to pretend it’s the end of next year, and it has been an absolutely amazing year for you and the people you care about. What three to five things did you do that made it so amazing? […] And then — this is key — we treat our priorities as the equivalent of that broken water heater, by putting them into our schedules first. We do this by thinking through our weeks before we are in them.

Laura recommends thinking about at least two priorities in each of three categories

  1. Career
  2. Relationships
  3. Self

Making a three-category list reminds us that there should be something in all three categories. So far the approach has worked for me. Especially the ‘Relationship’ and ‘Self’ categories are working out better than I expected.  Thanks, Laura! I encourage you to take the time and prioritize these 11 minutes 😉.

Thoughts? Opinions? Comments? Corrections?