Prioritizing’s a Pain, Part 1: Defining the Tasks

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Last updated on February 18th, 2024 at 11:38 pm

I don’t wanna.

Maybe later.

I just don’t feel like it.

There’s a ton of things to do, and I don’t want to do them. Yup. You heard me. I really just want to slack off and not bother with them.

However, I’m not going to allow myself that option.

Kevin challenged me some time back to do a blog series on prioritization since he knows that I hate to do it. I know hate is a strong word—that’s exactly why I used it.

Personally, I’m more of the type to fly by the seat of my pants. I plan things—but loosely. I’ll work on a project until I get bored of it and move on to something else. But I’ve definitely let commitments fall to the wayside and timelines lapse due to my scatterbrained nature. So it’s time to prioritize!

If you Google “how to prioritize”, these are the first four links you’ll come across:

Common themes:

  • KNOW your time limits
  • MAKE a list
  • LOOK for the positive outcomes from completing tasks
  • CONSIDER how items on your to-do list will affect others
  • RANK your items
  • FOCUS on the Pareto Principle, aka the 80-20 rule (i.e. 80% of the value will come from 20% of what you do—on a list of 10 items, 2 of them will have the most value when completed)
  • LIST only crucial tasks
  • Or you could always use the CARVER strategy (Criticality, Accessibility, Return/Recuperability, Vulnerability, Effect and Recognizability)

The CARVER strategy looks pretty enticing; for the sake of this exercise, I think I’ll use it. But I’ll get back to tomorrow. I’ll have no hope at prioritizing anything if I don’t know what to prioritize first. So the first thing to do is to figure out what the heck is on the to-do list! I put together a quick list based on different areas of my life—it doesn’t cover everything, just the items that’re most crucial for the time being:


  • Invitations
  • Website
  • Cake box designs
  • Follow up w/ vendors
  • Registry
  • Suits for myself and the groomsmen


  • Website


  • Future posts


  • Sweeping
  • Clean up my piles of work

Alright, not exactly a list to sneeze at. So there’s step one—laying it all out on the table and figuring out what needs doing. The list seems insurmountable right now, but I have a feeling that my using some prioritization tips and techniques, I’ll be able to manage it all.

Tomorrow, I’ll take a crack at sorting it all out!

Until then mi amigos,

The second logo for Casey Palmer, Canadian Dad



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