Episode 45: How to prioritise your to-do list

Welcome to The Rachel Kurzyp Show.

I woke up this morning with a bad case of the lockdown blues. I looked at my to-do list and instead of feeling inspired I felt meh. 

I don’t have a huge to-do list these days thanks to my business model, systems and processes and my amazing team.

But that doesn’t mean I don’t still need to get stuff done and prioritise my time, energy and creativity on tasks that serve me and my business.

That’s why today on the show, I thought it would be fun or should I say useful for me to share how I prioritise my to-do list every day but especially on days like today when starting something feels hard and it’s easy to tell myself that I can do it later because my computer is always within arms reach.

So let’s dive in.

What I do is get out a piece of paper and split it into three columns.

I title the left column ‘should do’ the middle column ‘want to do’ and the right column ‘been asked to do.’

Once I have the three columns I take out my to-do list which includes personal and business tasks and I put each task in one of the columns. So it might look something like this.

Today, some of the tasks on my to-do list were:

  1. Walk Pacey
  2. Finish my book
  3. Record a podcast

Pacey needs to be walked twice a day otherwise he gets grumpy and does Zoomies inside the house. My partner and I take turns walking him. This morning my partner asked me to walk Pacey because he had a morning meeting so I put the task walk Pacey in the right column ‘been asked to do.’

Reading is self-care for me so I always try and prioritise it. So today it went in the middle column under ‘want to do.’

And finally, I try to create a podcast episode every week so recording this podcast episode went in the left column ‘should do.’

Once I’ve assigned all my to-do tasks to columns, the prioritisation begins.

For many of us, our to-do lists are filled mostly with ‘should dos.’ Tasks that we feel we need to do because of responsibilities, expectations, consistency, needing to show up etc. 

Often this list leaves us feeling overwhelmed, unworthy and not in control of our lives. This is why we procrastinate among other things.

So what I like to do with my ‘Should do’ list is go through each task and take back the power. So I ask myself questions like: Is this task aligned to any of my goals? Do I need to do the task right now? How can I make this task more aligned with where I’m at right now?

Today for example, I decided to do the podcast episode on this topic which I had planned on doing at some point. This allowed me to honour my current energy and mindset and change the task from a should do into a want to.

You’ll be surprised how many tasks you can cross off your list and forget and how many you can reframe so that doing them is an empowered choice.

I do the same thing with my ‘been asked to do’ list because again, many of us have been asked to do things that we don’t need to be doing. This is why we start and end the day frustrated and exhausted. You have the power to change this by asking yourself questions like: Does the task need to be done by me? Can I delegate the task to someone else? Do I gain or lose something by completing the task and is it worth it?

Pacey couldn’t be walked by my partner this morning but we agreed that he would walk Pacey the next two mornings when I have meetings so I wouldn’t need to complete this task and try and fit it around my schedule. 

Many of my clients are stuck in the cycle of busy and so don’t feel like they have the time and space to have conversations around tasks that end up on their to-do list thanks to others. 

I would encourage you to have these conversations because women prioritise the needs of others over themselves – we know this – and other people in our lives from partners to children to team members can support us and take responsibility for literally running the world too.

And finally, I look at my ‘want to do’ list and because I’ve reframed my should dos and passed tasks onto others, I have more time, energy and creativity to do the tasks in this column. 

In fact, I often add things like today after I read my book, I reordered more vitamins, stretched, made a nutritious lunch and caught up with a friend.

And I did all of these things before starting on my now smaller and energetically more aligned to-do list.

If you take away anything from this episode, I hope it’s that you need to prioritize yourself and your needs, wants and desires before your business’ needs and wants.

I know that may sound easier said than done. And I recognise my privilege here too. But I didn’t always have a financially stable and abundant business and life. 

As a result, I overworked, relied only on myself and prioritized everything else above my health and happiness.

That’s why doing activities like this one are so important to me and my success because I know I need to continue prioritizing myself if I’m going to make my vision a reality.

OK now it’s your turn. 

I want you to complete this activity yourself and I’d love for you to share your results with me.

Send me a DM on Instagram my handle is @rachel_kurzyp. 

Thanks so much for tuning into today’s episode.

If you’ve found what I’ve shared valuable please leave a review and hit the subscribe button so you don’t miss when a new episode drops every Wednesday.

Hi, I’m Rachel

I support multi-talented business owners to get clear on what makes them tick and desperately needed in their industry so they can make more money.

Should you start a podcast?

Should you start a podcast?

Do you genuinely want to start a podcast? Or do you think it’s the only way to grow your audience, share your expertise and produce evergreen content?


Should you start a podcast?

Should you start a podcast?

Do you genuinely want to start a podcast? Or do you think it’s the only way to grow your audience, share your expertise and produce evergreen content?