Do you know how to choose priorities that matter, that make a difference to your bottom line?

So, you're struggling to figure out what is actually a priority when it comes to your side hustle. And I totally get it. There are conflicting things that you feel like you should be focusing on, but every time you try to start, something else comes up that battles for your immediate attention.

I want to show you how to choose your priorities, how to actually figure out what you should be focusing on, particularly when it comes to your side hustle.

I'm going to walk you through a few steps to allow you to get a lot clearer on what your priorities should be.

How to Choose Priorities in Your Side Hustle 

Step #1: Get Clear On What You Are Trying to AccomplishHow to choose priorities that matter Pinterest Image

We all want to nail our priorities. The first step in doing that is to simply get clear on what you are trying to accomplish.

Are you trying to start a side hustle? Are you trying to improve your productivity? Why are you doing the things that you're doing?

This is more about making sure you're clear that you're actually doing things related to your side hustle. Just because your to-do list is a mile long with a lot of things on it, are they important to your side hustle?

That's the first question.

Step #2a: Identify Your Why

Next, ask yourself why.

Why? Why are you doing all those things? Take some time to get clear on that and set a time block for 15 minutes to get that done and write it all down… why are you doing those things?

Here is a worksheet that you can download if you wanna try and do this within an actual framework. But you can totally do this just using a blank notebook too.

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So, why?

Why are you doing all of these things?

What are they for?

What's the end goal with them?


Answer those questions first.

Next, take all the items on your to-do list and itemize all those tasks.

You can apply this framework whether it's a side hustle or personal stuff. This works no matter what.

Taking all of those to-do's and tasks, run through the following questions:

  • Why is this important?
  • Why is it important that it's done in the next 90 days?

Write down why each is important. Is it because it's going to move your side hustle forward? Is it because it will increase your productivity, your income, your overall happiness? Write down why each item is important to accomplish.

Step #2b: Identify Any Hard Deadlines

The next thing that you'll wanna record or note is whether there is a hard deadline for any of those to-do's or tasks within the next 90-day period. If a task must get done within that time period, write that deadline down beside it.

For example, is it a client's project that you've gotta get finished in the next 10 days? Or do you need to get your hair cut this week because it's driving you nuts?

Put deadlines beside the ones that have them.

The third piece of this puzzle is to also ask yourself, “If I don't complete this within the next 90 days, what are the ramifications?”

What are the consequences to this task not being done in the next 90 days?

Be real with yourself.

A real-life example: 

For example, let’s say you've got something on your task list like creating a new lead magnet. The reason that you're doing it is to add more subscribers to your email list and it aligns with the goal of adding a thousand subscribers to your email list in the next 90 days.

That is important to your business and financial health and that is why you're doing it. It builds your email list which is potentially monetizable. And if it aligns with your overarching goal of growing your business to increase income, then it makes sense that it needs to be on there. 

You would put a hard deadline on that type of task so there is some urgency to it. You need to feel like you've gotta get this task done by a certain date because the consequence of not getting it done is negative cash flow.

Let’s recap

To recap this particular step, you need to run your to-do list and tasks through the following questioning:

  • Why is it important?
  • Is it deadline driven and what happens if you don't complete it?
  • What does that look like?

You should now be starting to get a clear picture of what things are going to look like for the next 90 days.

Step #3: Prioritize Your Priorities 

Step three of this process is to figure out what your actual priorities are.

This is based on a framework that is outlined in the Productivity Power Plan course.  But basically, you're going to run your to-do lists and everything that you've got in there through the following framework:

Nail your priorities framework - download the worksheet!

So you're going to have a table that has on the left side: 90-Day Achievable and Not 90-Day Achievable

Along the bottom, you have two other options, High Effort, and Low Effort. What’s left are the four boxes in the middle that you need to fill in.

So, you've got 90 day achievable; not 90 day achievable; high effort; and low effort.

Taking all of your to-do items and tasks, put them into the boxes that make the most sense.

90-Day Achievable/High Effort

If something is 90-day achievable and it's going to be high effort, then it goes in the top left box. An example of a to-do item that might go into this box would be writing the draft of a book and getting it edited.

90-Day Achievable/Low Effort

If it's 90-day achievable, low effort, then it goes in top right box. An example of this could be recording YouTube videos and getting them edited.

If it's not 90-day achievable and it's high effort, then it goes in the bottom left box. An example of this could be creating and launching your membership site.

Once you fill out the boxes with items from your to-do list, you will get an idea of all the things and how much effort it's going to take to do those things.

Once you've got the framework filled out, you can confidently make decisions about the things that are important to your side hustle and which ones you want to focus on. 

Have You Identified Your Goals? 

Filling out the framework also depends on what your goals are and how much energy you have. Choose priorities based on those two things.

Are you working towards something that you know is going to take longer than 90 days, but you still need to be doing something in each 90-day block to get to the finish line? Then you would look at the Not 90-day Achievable boxes as a starting point for filling out another framework for those tasks.

Then, what are the things that are high effort and low effort and where do you want your energy to be? For example, if you know that you have a really busy schedule for the next 30 days at work, then you probably wanna focus on the low effort tasks. The items in the box 90-Day Achieveable/Low Effort will be the priorities to choose in this instance.

The reality is that if you're working a day job and doing a side hustle on the side, which is what most people are doing, then you're going to want to focus on the low effort things so as not to overwhelm yourself or your schedule.

It's about picking and choosing the things or priorities that make the most sense to you based on your energy levels and what you're trying to achieve.

If you want to dive deeper into increasing your productivity, check out the Productivity Power Plan. It works for both work and personal life and will help you figure out how to really dial in an actual 90-day plan.

Get your productivity sorted for 2019 goals and planning!

Action Step

Your immediate action step is to fill out the framework using all the things in your to-do list and decide what you're going to focus on over the next 90 days.

When you choose priorities in your side hustle and work a 90-day plan, you won't find yourself stuck wondering why you aren't accomplishing your goals.

Lise Cartwright
Lise Cartwright

Founder of Hustle & Groove and your creative business strategist. If you want to get notified of new posts just like the ones you see here, then make sure you join the awesome H & G community — Join Now!

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