If you don’t set your own priorities

someone else will set them for you.

And if you’re the type of person who says yes to every request that is made of them, then you are letting other people set your priorities.

You say yes because you want to help. You have a generous spirit and have the best of intentions. But saying yes too quickly can get you into trouble.

To gain more control over setting your own priorities, create a new habit: use the pause button. When someone asks you to do something, instead of saying yes right away, try forming a new habit. Smile and say, “That’s a great idea. Let me get back to you on that.” And do get back to them. But first, take some time to evaluate how this request affects your priorities. This request probably doesn’t need to be filled today. It might not even need to be filled by you. Pause and think about it.



Greg McKeown in HBR