Prioritization Skills

Have you or your child recently had so many tasks and responsibilities that you simply did not know where to get started?

The way to avoid these situations is to recognize that all tasks are not created equal. With proper planning, we can list our to-dos and prioritize them by urgency and importance, allowing order to emerge from chaos and enabling us to overcome an “analysis paralysis” which increases stress and decreases productivity. That is why this month’s study tips are:

→  Maintain a daily to-do list.

→  Prioritize tasks based upon their urgency and importance.

Our recommendation is that students should spend time each day listing out their school assignments and other activities and then identifying the tasks that require the most immediate energy. Two tools that can provide needed structure to this planning (and which we will discuss during this week’s sessions) are linked below:

3 ways developing Prioritization Skills make students more college-ready:

  1. Effective prioritization is one way to overcome the temptation of procrastination.
  2. Avoiding tasks or activities that are not essential helps students maintain a better school-life balance.
  3. Regularly re-evaluating priorities helps student both develop reflection skills and avoid the “sunk cost fallacy” of continuing tasks or activities that have decreased in urgency or importance due to changing conditions.

Take it to the next level!

  • Make sure that each of your tasks has a clear deadline.
  • Use your student planner to budget time each morning for prioritization.
  • When in doubt, start with the task you are least excited about, as getting that out of the way when you have the most energy will provide motivation for your later assignments.

Remember, developing great habits takes consistent practice so keep at it!

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