What are your priorities? Have you thought about it? I hear more and more people referring to the environment we are living in as VUCA. This acronym was originally used by the military about the battlefield meaning Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity. Is this the way you see the world today and is it what drives so many people today to refer to themselves as ?Crazy Busy??
There is no doubt that we are living with constant change. Technology is impacting life and creating disruption in a manner that we have never seen before and perhaps were not anticipating and at some level don?t like. However, in many cases change is good, and change is the only way we can experience growth. The pace of change is unlikely to slow down any time soon and if you feel like you are living in a VUCA world that feeling is likely to continue. The question is, what actions can you take to bring some sensibility to this VUCA environment and take the Crazy out of Crazy Busy?
It is possible that by clearly identifying, setting and living with priorities you can bring some sense of control to all the noise around you. Without clear priorities in every part of your life the chances are very good that you are spending much of your time mole whacking and the moles just keep coming. Have you made decisions that allow you to set boundaries relative to your personal life and your career and how they impact each other. Think about just one important segment of your personal life, your health. What priority have you given your health. There is no shortage of information available about how to live a healthy life. You may have noticed that when your health is good you take it for granted and when something happens that disrupts your health and impacts your ability to do the things that are important to you what happens? I suspect that suddenly, your health becomes your priority. However, once the disruption is solved you may go back to whatever lifestyle you were living without thinking about what caused the disruption and what you can do to avoid it in the future, it is no longer a priority.
The above health related example is just one area of your life where setting priorities might be very useful. How about work life balance or work life integration, what priorities do you have in place there?
If you want to be successful in the VUCA world where everything seems to be a priority, usually driven by someone other than you, and you find yourself? Crazy Busy? mole whacking it?s possible that a way forward may be to define your priorities and then live them. If you want to take control of your life in this VUCA world by setting priorities, you can make good progress by taking the following actions:
- Look at your life holistically and decide what you want from your life.
- Define your why. Why do you want what you have defined as your key wants?
- Break down your life in to the big chunks. You can define what these are, but they may include, health, relationships including family, career, financial well being, community involvement, spirituality etc.
- Take each of the big chunks and give them a priority. How much focus and time does each one deserve? This is not an easy task.
- ?Once you have completed the step above place these items on a big calendar, so you can observe the relationship between each priority. You may find conflicts that you need to fix along the process. You will also find that as you begin to live these priorities there may be some adjustments necessary in the big picture view as well as in the reality of trying to live with the priorities.
- ?While you are doing this exercise go back and look at your why frequently. Taking this step will remind you of why you may be having challenges balancing some of the priorities but also inform you of why you are doing it.
If you can use the above process to sort out your priorities for the big picture of your life, you may also find that if you apply this process to your career it will provide some additional clarity about what you are doing, why you are doing it and it may help you do things in the right order with the right allocation of resources.
Establishing priorities may not be the only way forward in the VUCA Crazy Busy environment but it is clearly a step in the right direction. Give it a try you may find that you will have less moles to whack.