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Blog: Helping Kids Become Organized
The ABC's of Organizing Kids: S is for Setting Priorities

When we end a day knowing that we have worked really hard but do not feel like we have accomplished what we really needed to then it usually means we have not managed to do the most important things to us.  This is where setting priorities is so important.  We can work very hard to do things right.  Sounds good doesn't it.  The problem is that doing things right does not mean we are doing the right things.  This is an important concept to teach our children.  The expression work smart not hard, sort of describes this as well.   What can we do to teach our children this?

First they need to understand the concept of setting priorities.    We all have things we want to do, things we are asked to do and things that we might feel like we have to do.  Some tasks we have no control over like emergencies, but many we do.  First, we must analyze ourselves.  What is "really" important to us?  What do we have control over?  What are our goals?  These are the things that help us determine how to prioritize the tasks which should consume the time in our days.  When we align our true needs or core values with what we spend our time doing, we are setting priorities and are able to achieve inner peace. 

If learning to better play an instrument for example is really important to us but we do not set any time each day to practice we have not properly set our priorities and are not being true to values.  If we feel like we want to be healthier and get more exercise and do not schedule any time during our days and weeks to exercise we again are not setting priorities for what we feel is most important.  It is up to us to review the things that are on our "plate" each week and determine what of those are really most important and put them at the top of the list to do when we have the most energy and creativity to accomplish those important tasks.

What makes this simple sounding concept so hard?  First knowing what is really important to us is an ongoing and changing vision; we must create this vision and revisit it regularly.  Second we must be proactive in setting the time aside each week to review the tasks and make sure they are in alignment with our vision. Third, we must try to stay as much in control and focused on our goals so that we can minimize the distractions and perception that we cannot do what we have our mind set to do. 

Remember, as Stephen Covey, once wrote, we can work really, really hard to climb the ladder to success but if we are not setting our priorities to be in alignment with our true core values, we might just find that our ladder is on the wrong building.  We want our kids to understand this concept and process so that they can apply it to what is most important in their life.

posted on: 2/11/2008 9:00:00 AM by Rosanne Larkins
category: Family

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Helping Kids Become Organized

by Rosanne Larkins

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About Rosanne:

Rosanne Larkins, Defining Time & Space Professional Organizing, Helping people put peace into their life through simplifying things around them. Reduce stress through creating order, save money knowing what you have, save time knowing where to find things.

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