JS Tip 143: From the Time Management Workshops: The Value of a Deadline

We’ve said this before: We’re close to year’s end. (Yeah. Like tomorrow.) A lot of us make New Year’s resolutions. We’ll talk about ways to keep those resolutions.

A deadline provides an urgency.

When you attach a deadline to a task, you move it up the priority list.

On your task list, you’ve had “Clear my desk” for weeks now. You know it’s important—that’s why it’s there, but you haven’t gotten around to it. Maybe you haven’t gotten around to it because there’s been no urgency.    

Add: By Friday at 5:00 p.m.

Whoa. Friday at 5:00. I’ve gotta get it done by then.

The deadline prompts you to set everything else aside by Friday at 3:00 and work on clearing your desk.

The deadline focuses your mind and your effort on the task. It doesn’t matter if the deadline is self-imposed or arbitrary. The deadline works.  

If you have questions, comments, or arguments, let us know. We love this stuff.

Next week: Setting interim deadlines.