Soft Deadlines Transform Your Heart-Based Priorities into Realities

priority soft deadline

Soft deadlines help you accomplish your goals.

Making your priorities into realities requires action. And the timing of your actions is key, especially for priorities that have multiple steps.

Your priorities clarify the relative importance of your goals, and I’d like to suggest that you use soft deadlines to actualize your priorities.

Here’s a tip to get you started.

Timely Tip for Using Soft Deadlines:

Soft deadlines keep you from bumping into hard limits.

Completing a task before the absolute last minute supports your success and helps your flexibility. So routinely provide yourself with earlier, soft deadlines. This creates a cushion of time for tying up loose ends and handling unanticipated glitches.

Your First Action Steps:

Start assigning soft deadlines for important tasks.

Write them into your calendar. Consider writing all soft deadlines in one color, and adding the hard deadlines in another to easily distinguish between the two.

Then practice focusing on the soft deadline, so that you create the latitude you desire.

Going Deeper:

When establishing a soft deadline, ask yourself:

1. How familiar is this task?

Schedule extra time for new challenges – remember the “times two” rule and double your time estimate!

2. How much cooperation and assistance do you need to complete the project?

Allow for more time as the number of people involved increases.

3. How vulnerable is this project to disruptions?

Are you squeezing a big enterprise into an already full space? Expect spillover and schedule accordingly.

4. What is your personal history with meeting deadlines?

If you habitually drag your heels for any reason, build in buffer time to help overcome your resistance.

5. What consequences will you face if your final deadline is not met?

Let your soft deadline create a safety zone to protect you from harsh outcomes. Building in an ample cushion allows you to adjust to changes and overcome unanticipated hurdles without falling behind.

As you explore using soft deadlines, along with honing your prioritizing skills, you’ll be amazed and pleased with how these tools affect your experience of each of your moments.

And if procrastination is an issue for you…

You’re certainly not alone. Millions of people struggle with this energy draining time thief. Procrastination’s costs include lost productivity, lost income, lost opportunities, frazzled nerves and damaged relationships.

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