We are now going to be implementing a priority setting technique that Brian Tracy describes in his book, Eat That Frog. You may have already read his book. I’ve read it too, no worries.
But I want you to examine your master list and label each of the items either A, B, C, D, E following these categories.
You then place an A, B, C, D or E before each of the items on your list before you begin the first task.
An “A” item is defined as something that is very important. This is something you must do. There would be serious consequences if this task was not completed. If you have more than one A task (and consider it carefully) then list them A1, A2 and so on.
“Shoulds” versus “Musts”
A “B” item is defined as a task that you should do. It only has mild consequences if not completed. These are the tadpoles of your work life. It may mean that someone will be unhappy or inconvenienced if you don’t do it, however it is nowhere near as important as an A task.
The rule is that you should never do a B task if there is an A task left undone.
A “C” task is defined as something that would be nice to do but for which there are no consequences at all.
A “D” task is one that can be delegated to someone else. The rule is that you should delegate everything that anyone else can do, so you can free up your time for your “A” tasks that only you can do.
An “E” task is something that you can eliminate altogether and it wont make any real difference to your results. This may be a task that was important at one time but is no longer relevant to you or anyone else. Often it is something that you do out of habit or because you enjoy it. However, every minute you spend on an “E” task is time taken away from a task or activity that can make a real difference in your life.
Take Action Immediately
The key to making the ABCDE method work is for you to discipline yourself to start immediately on your “A1” task and then stay at it until it is complete. Use your willpower to get going and stay going on this one job, the most important task you could possibly be doing.