The Most Important Task On Your To-Do List Today

Matthew McConaughey

“Have a beer”.

Or something just like that. The idea comes from Matthew McConaughey in an interview he did on Leno or Conan (can’t remember which). It’s not the absolute most important task on the list. But it’s just as important as all the rest.

On Your Own Terms

Making a commitment to stop and smell the roses can be difficult. It’s an exercise in living on your own terms. In setting the rules. In balance. And it’s not just a good idea, or a fun idea. It’s a critical leadership skill.

Rather than just following tasks that have to be done, you’re defining them. And you’re making the time to take care of all your best assets; family, friends, your health. When all those things are good, they don’t distract you from the serious tasks on your list.

Most of the time they’re simple things like have a beer. Go for a run. Play the guitar. They’re things we never seem to have time for. And need to make the time for.

The Deliverables

For any idea to be worth something, there has to be some real benefits to it. There are plenty here:

  • Burn-out control. Every battery needs recharging
  • You can bring in new and fresh perspectives on difficult problems
  • It forces you to delegate, lead and direct rather than just doing everything yourself
  • Quality of life and authoritive leadership go hand in hand
  • There are more opportunities in a wider picture

On your own terms … it’s a bold way to look at things. Just like I like it.

So what’s the most important task on your to-do list today?

10 thoughts on “The Most Important Task On Your To-Do List Today”

  1. Shane, i so agree with your last point “There are more opportunities in a wider picture” – it’s easy to loose track when you focus too much, gotta look at the big picture, it’s easier to find your way when you’re lost.

    Most important task today? umm, well right now that would be going to sleep, but tomorrow i have to go to futureshop so they can take my Ipod and have it repaired, since it stopped working and is under warranty (things made by man should never fail!!! hehe), then it would be to write a new blog post 🙂

  2. Shane, how coincedental is this.

    Just today I was kind of mulling over in my head my list of to do’s deciding which were important and which were not so. One of them was finalising a draft post on my blog.Having done that though, I realised that during the process i had in fact created another ‘to do list’! I ended up saying to myself..hmmn I really should do a blog post on this and that and what have you.

    Sometimes its good to have an off switch too 🙂

  3. It’s easy to get so busy that you don’t feel like you have time to stop a “take a moment”……..whether that be having a beer or whatever. It’s important to do to maintain a sense of control.

  4. Jon,

    There are so many opportunities outside the tunnel-vision tunnel. Most of them, in fact.


    That’s a great point; the to-do list has a way never-ending. That’s why it’s so important to schedule in the have-a-beer stuff … to make sure it gets done too.


    If I don’t plan to take a moment, it rarely happens. Usually I’ll go for a walk and it’ll clear my head so I can focus on the tasks I have to do. But that’s not enough when it comes to the big picture. That’s why I like to make sure I have a good assortment of fun stuff on the list too.

  5. Right now I have a whole lot of things to do mate, but thats invariably the situation, too much to do and too little time. The person to blame for that is obviously me, because I spend a lot of time doing things which are not that important.

    I talk about time management in my last post and am getting a lot better but still a long way to go. Things to do is always a never ending list.

    Good post.

    Take care and Cheers.

  6. It’s okay to have too much to do Robin.

    Just remember to put some down time on your task list and make it a priority! All the other stuff on the list will get done much more easily if you do because you’ll be operating at a full charge when you tackle them.

  7. I’m right in sync with this today. I just need a break so I think I’m going to take it instead of fighting this temporary low cycle. I find that when I do that, the low cycle passes and turns into more fun time so I can get back on track sooner.

    Although I should also take time out more frequently just for no reason other than to enjoy life!

  8. Hey Sully,

    Both good points. I have to take breaks during the day to let some ideas ferment and prioritze when there’s a hundred things flying at me. And yep, sometimes you just have to ditch out and actually enjoy the things you’re working so hard to enjoy.

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