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Need some help clarifying your priorities?
In our busy lives, we often struggle to make time for what’s truly important.
We all get the same 24 hours each day, yet it often feels that there isn’t enough time to accomplish our tasks and give our attention to the things that matter most.
At the same time, we often see others giving equal attention to their responsibilities and the things that truly matter to them. How do they do it?
It’s all a matter of setting priorities in life.
For some, this means refusing to be swept away by urgent but unimportant matters.
Others consciously set aside time each day to do the things that are important for their personal happiness and well-being.
Finally, some people set their priorities by saying no to distractions and staying laser-focused on achieving their goals.
What You Will Learn
How Do I Set My Priorities?
The Eisenhower matrix is a powerful tool for determining which things are important and which are urgent. This way, you can make better decisions when setting your priorities.
In addition to the Eisenhower matrix, you can simply ask yourself four questions to determine if something should be on your priority list. Ask yourself:
Your answers will reveal if a task should be your priority, or it’s something that can wait or be delegated.
In this article, we’re sharing a collection of priority quotes to help unearth your true priorities, which may have been buried under a pile of urgent yet non-essential matters you’ve been taking care of.
These actionable quotes urge you to work in the service of what’s truly important to you. This way, you’ll live a life of contentment rather than one of regret.
Priority Quotes to Focus on What’s Important
1. “Do first things first, and second things not at all.” – Peter Drucker
2. “Most of us spend too much time on what is urgent and not enough time on what is important.” – Stephen Covey
3. “There is no one busy in this world, it’s always about priorities. You will always find time for the things you feel important.” – Nishan Panwar
“There is no one busy in this world, it’s always about priorities. You will always find time for the things you feel important.” – Nishan Panwar
4. “Our greatest danger in life is in permitting the urgent things to crowd out the important.” – Charles E. Hummel
5. “Good things happen when you set your priorities straight.” – Scott Caan
6. “Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
7. “The mark of a great man is one who knows when to set aside the important things in order to accomplish the vital ones.” – Brandon Sanderson
8. “The Principle of Priority states (a) you must know the difference between what is urgent and what is important, and (b) you must do what’s important first.” – Steven Pressfield
9. “I do know that when I am 60, I should be attempting to achieve different personal goals than those which had priority at age 20.” – Warren Buffet
10. “Like it or not, the world evolves, priorities change and so do you.” – Marilu Henner
11. “Wise are those who learn that the bottom line doesn’t always have to be their top priority.” – William Arthur Ward
12. “We don’t drift in good directions. We discipline and prioritize ourselves there.” – Andy Stanley
13. “Getting to the top should be a priority, but being aware of the reason for getting there should be the focus.” – Anonymous
14. “One-half of knowing what you want is knowing what you must give up before you get it.” – Sidney Howard
15. “Life is as simple as these three questions: What do I want? Why do I want it? And, how will I achieve it?” – Shannon L. Alder
16. “Your behavior reflects your actual purposes.” – Ronald Heifetz
17. “I’ve learned that people say they can’t put their goals at the center of life (family, time, travel, faith, health), but they have no problem putting work there at their expense. If that hurt, good. Change something.” – Richie Norton
18. “The root of productivity is in personal priorities. Know what matters to you and why.” – Melissa Steginus
19. “It is not a daily increase, but a daily decrease. Hack away at the inessentials.” – Bruce Lee
20. “Time is something that you make decisions about. You make time, you don’t have it. You make time for what matters to you.” – Yasmina Diallo
21. “Whatever keeps you from reaching your goals today had better be important – it's costing you a day of your life!” – Nido R. Qubein
22. “If I missed the sunrise of this day and if I let the sunset slip by unnoticed, I might ask if what captured my attention this day was worth the loss of this day because I can’t think of anything that’s that important.” – Craig D. Lounsbrough
23. “It is OK to be a little selfish about my priorities.” – Sean Covey
24. “Your priorities determine your happiness — place them in order and act on them.” – Francis Shenstone
25. “To change your life, you need to change your priorities.” – Mark Twain
26. “People think focus means saying yes to the thing you've got to focus on. But that's not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully.” – Steve Jobs
27. “Subtracting from your list of priorities is as important as adding to it.” – Frank Sonnenberg
“Subtracting from your list of priorities is as important as adding to it.” – Frank Sonnenberg
28. “If you continually ask yourself, ‘What's important now' you won't waste time on the trivial.” – Lou Holtz
29. “Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.” – John Wooden
30. “Lack of time is actually lack of priorities.” – Tim Ferriss
31. “Make yourself a priority. Fill yourself up so that you can give more to others.” – Oprah Winfrey
32. “If it’s a priority you’ll find a way. If it isn’t, you’ll find an excuse.” – Jim Rohn
33. “The greatest reflection of your priorities is your time. Whatever you say about what matters to you, the true test is where you place your time.” – Nick Crocker
34. “I suggest that you become obsessed about the things you want; otherwise, you are going to spend a lifetime being obsessed with making up excuses as to why you didn’t get the life you wanted.” – Grant Cardone
35. “When we’re forced to do something, suddenly the time is there. Which means it’s there all the time, but we've just chosen to limit ourselves by believing that it isn't.” – Jen Sincero
36. “Perpetual devotion to what a man calls his business, is only to be sustained by perpetual neglect of many other things.” – Robert Louis Stevenson
“Perpetual devotion to what a man calls his business, is only to be sustained by perpetual neglect of many other things.” – Robert Louis Stevenson
37. “Let us reflect on what is truly of value in life, what gives meaning to our lives, and set our priorities on the basis of that.” – Dalai Lama
38. “The results of taking on too much is that nothing gets done. Or it doesn’t get done well.” – Karen Martin
39. “Nobody's life is ever all balanced. It's a conscious decision to choose your priorities every day.” – Elisabeth Hasselbeck
40. “Be at least as interested in what goes on inside you as what happens outside. If you get the inside right, the outside will fall into place.” – Eckhart Tolle
41. “The things which are most important don't always scream the loudest.” – Bob Hawke
42. “The reason most goals are not achieved is that we spend our time doing second things first.” – Robert J. McKain
43. “Your days are numbered. Use them to throw open the windows of your soul to the sun. If you do not, the sun will soon set, and you with it.” – Marcus Aurelius
Final Thoughts on Priority Quotes
Striking a balance between responsibilities at work and home can be a daunting task, and it’s easy to lose sight of our priorities.
What we need is to step back and assess if what we’re doing is really something important to us, or if it’s just urgent, but not actually important, and does not contribute to our happiness in the long run.
We hope that the quotes above will inspire you to work more closely on the things that are truly important to you. Which of the quotes is your favorite?
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