This is the last text for this year. I will be back in the second week next year.
The Most Important task is not an important mental model, but it helps you to simplify your life. As you can see from the title, the Most Important Task is in a singular form, not plural. Zero is the simplest number, but you have to think the next simplest figure, one. One way to separate yourself from others is to have a perfect focus on the most important task. To say ”yes” to this task, you have to say ”no” to tens of others. This task has to be your top priority. The most important task can have different timescales. Your daily choices can be done for achieving your most important long-term task or goal.
Whatever you think is your Most Important Task, you need define it some way. And you need to understand why you have to do it. No task can be the most important without the reason. The reason can be something like, ”Without doing a task x, nothing else gets done” or ”By doing a task y everything else will be easier or unnecessary” Sometimes this task has to be put into separate tasks. Then, you have to define the priorities of these smaller tasks. You have your most productive hours of the day. Different people have different hours. Normally, these hours are from two to four hours after you wake up. You need some time to recover from your sleep in order to be productive. My most productive hours are somewhere from three to five hours after I wake up. You can do small experiments to figure out your own.
Be ruthless in focusing on the most important task. Do not let anything or anyone interfere with doing it. Close your e-mail notifications, put your smartphone on silent mode and educate everyone around you to leave you alone during this task. This is probably easier said than done. And it will take some time. Showing the improved results of your working days is maybe the only smart way to do it. Forget everything else until you get this task done. I recommend to put a deadline to it, because you cannot be productive the whole day every day for a long time. Other hours you can use for less important things like governance. You can define the most important task for a longer time frame than one day. If you do this, add these moments into your calendar. Future is hard to forecast. Therefore, I don´t recommend this. Timeframe have to specific in order to get things done.
To get the most important task done, you have to define the first physical microtask. It is harder to begin without defining it. For example, you have a toothache that makes your life miserable. Then, the most important task for you is to reserve an appointment with a dentist. The first physical task is to find a phone number for the dentist or find a good dentist from the internet. The definition of the right result is filling the cavity and the getting rid off the toothache. You can also define all the other physical and mental microtasks if you think it is necessary. You can also create a system or systems for getting this task done.
If you have originally thought something different for the most important task, change it when something else changes your priorities. In an ideal situation, the most important task is the same task every day. For example, most often, the most important task for me is to learn new things about the most useful mental models. It can be hard to believe, because I write and publish texts once a week. My priority is to understand the models and how to build a latticework around them. Writing more is not important now. Priorities can change in the future.
I want to wish everybody happy holidays! Remember to take some time to recover!