Personal Online Journal

Friday, February 06, 2015

Urgent versus Important

Stephanie and I talked about this quote last night.
Have you noticed that when you have determined to accomplish a very important task, many other good ideas for other things to do seem to come to your mind? If they are allowed to interfere, they will distract you from the more important objective. I have found help by writing down those thoughts as they come, promising myself that as soon as I finish the important task, I will attend to them in priority. That practice helps me stay focused on those matters which are essential. 
I believe there are times in your life when, because of your righteousness and your determination to do what is right, Satan will not be able to deflect you into serious transgression. He will switch then to the strategy of placing before you a banquet of good and worthwhile things to do, meant to distract you from those that are the most important and essential to accomplish in your life. 
Fortunately, as you pray for guidance, the Holy Ghost will help you identify those matters that are vital and necessary to accomplish above others. That means that at times you may have to set aside things that would be worthwhile and enjoyable to pursue--for those that are most vitally important for that period of your life. ("Have No Regrets" Richard G. Scott. CES Fireside, Sep 1999)
As I thought about it this morning, it made me think of something I learned from 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Stephen Covey talks about the difference between important and urgent tasks and the matrix it creates (p 160)

I think this folds well into the thought I had a few weeks ago.
And see that all these things are done in wisdom and order; for it is not requisite that a man should run faster than he has strength. And again, it is expedient that he should be diligent, that thereby he might win the prize; therefore, all things must be done in order. (Mosiah 4:27)
My pattern seems to be to try to run faster than I have strength, Then I frustrate myself by trying to do more than I am yet able to do. I become disheartened and swing way to the other side and decide to do not much at all. The Lord is telling me that the sweet spot is in the middle. To be diligent in doing and becoming good. But not to run faster than I have strength,

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