“When we are busy, we naturally believe that we are achieving. But busyness does not equal productivity.”
The Law of of Priorities is the seventeenth of the 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership by John C. Maxwell.
Our schedule might be full, but if it’s not full of the right things to do, we might be wasting time.
The Law of Priorities states that activity is not necessarily accomplishment.
In the book, The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, John Maxwell shares the story of why he relocated from San Diego, one of his favorite places, to Atlanta, not the greatest place for him, but a major airline hub.
At that point in his life, living in San Diego was not very productive for John Maxwell. He then decided to relocate, because instead of comfort he wanted more progress in his career.
What about us? Are we choosing comfort over progress?
Obey the Law of Priorities
Many people are taking time management classes but they still have a hard time trying to get the right things done. This because they may be breaking the Law of Priorities.
And truly we cannot really manage time, because time move forward inexorably and we cannot stop it. We can only control how we use it.
Leaders always need to prioritize, whether they’re leading a small group, running a small business, or leading a billion-dollar corporation.
To be an effective leader, you must constantly reevaluate your priorities—your schedule, your commitments, your family life, your goals, your values—to determine what is important.
The best leaders seem to be able to get the Law of Priorities to work for them by satisfying multiple priorities with each activity. This actually enables them to increase their focus while reducing their number of actions
You can use the Pareto Principle to help you decide what are your priorities. This principle, when applied to this situation, shows that if you focus on the 20% most important activities you will have an 80% return on your effort.
THE THREE RS
The three Rs are requirement, return, and reward. To be effective, according to John C. Maxwell, leaders should order their lives according to these three questions:
These are questions you should ask yourself: “What is required?” “What gives the greatest return?” and “What brings the greatest reward?”
What is required?
What must I do that nobody else can do for me?
The first thing you want to prioritize is what is required of you. We are all accountable to somebody for the work we do and the question we want to ask ourselves is: what must I do that nobody else can do for me? If we’re doing something that is not absolutely necessary, we should probably eliminate it. If we’re doing something that is necessary but that someone else could do, then we should delegate it.
What gives me the greatest return?
Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should do it
After figuring out what we must do that nobody else can do for us, we should list what gives us the greatest return.
As a leader, we should spend most of our time working in our areas of greatest strength. If what we are doing can be done 70-80 percent as well by someone else, then we will be better off delegating it.
If you identify a responsibility that someone else could do, consider developing and training a person to take care of it.
What brings me the greatest reward?
Last, we need to prioritize what brings the greatest reward.
The older we become, the more we realize that life is too short not to do something you love. It is frustrating to work in a job that you don’t like only to pay bills and keep going. There are times when survival is all we can do, but we should try to have a higher purpose and be satisfied with our job.
No matter what else you do, I urge you to make time for what you love, it is important for your personal satisfaction.
Find time to do what you love. Find time to do something you are passionate about. If you cannot do it as a hobby, then do it in the evening. If nobody pays you t do it, do it as a volunteer. The most important thing is that you prioritize what gives you a personal satisfaction.
It is time to reignite your passion, recharge your dreams, and refocus your life. To do that you have to reorder your priorities.
Activity is not necessarily accomplishment. That is the Law of Priorities.
THE 21 IRREFUTABLE LAWS OF LEADERSHIP BY JOHN C. MAXWELL
The book is divided in 21 main chapters, one for each of the 21 leadership laws. Below are the links to the individual chapters.
- THE LAW OF THE LID
- THE LAW OF INFLUENCE
- THE LAW OF PROCESS
- THE LAW OF NAVIGATION
- THE LAW OF E.F.HUTTON
- THE LAW OF SOLID GROUND
- THE LAW OF RESPECT
- THE LAW OF INTUITION
- THE LAW OF MAGNETISM
- THE LAW OF CONNECTION
- THE LAW OF THE INNER CIRCLE
- THE LAW OF EMPOWERMENT
- THE LAW OF REPRODUCTION
- THE LAW OF BUY-IN
- THE LAW OF VICTORY
- THE LAW OF THE BIG MO
- THE LAW OF PRIORITIES
- THE LAW OF SACRIFICE
- THE LAW OF TIMING
- THE LAW OF EXPLOSIVE GROWTH
- THE LAW OF LEGACY
ON AMAZON: The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership