Important vs Urgent

Googled the definition of “important,” and you will get “of great significance or value”  And do the same for “urgent,” and Google returns “requiring immediate action or attention.”

Whatever is important to us, we act on it because the perceived value.  Straightforward.  What less intuitive is our important-BUT-not-urgent priorities.  Priorities like exercise and eating healthy.  They get hijacked by the things that are urgent.

Yes, urgent things act on us, demanding our attention right now.  Things like a ringing phone, text notification, or interruption.  Without a clue, these things pretend to be important and bait our attention.  They work on our fear of  missing something “important.”

So beware of those urgent attention grabbers.  And don’t let them push the real priorities of important-but-not-urgent to later.

What are your important-but-not-urgent priorities?

This entry was posted in awareness, Goals, time management, value and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Important vs Urgent

  1. Alyssa says:

    As a full time working mom of 4 AND avid runner, this really hits home for me. I have a lot of urgent and a lot of important. It’s nice to think that’s there’s a difference between the two.


    • terryshen says:

      Absolutely Alyssa. Especially in your case when you have your hands full. It is important to take care of yourself such as finding time to run while some of the urgent can wait. Chances are with four kids, I suspect some of the urgent are not really. One of my favorite quotes is:

      Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone.  The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of nonessentials. – Lin Yutang

      Eliminte the urgent impostors that are not important but want you to think they are.


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