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The difference between urgent and important

Below you’ll read my take on the difference between urgent versus important, and my practical tips on how to tackle this issue. But first, meet the wonderful Simone Blakers (left); Managing Director, RAPP DDB and Yasmin Quemard (right); CD at UM, Australia and leader at SheSays, Australia on our long awaited lunchtime catchup. These are two inspiring women who are using their unique gifts to cultivate empowerment in others in a very humble and genuine way. Truly blessed to know them and our conversation created the spark for me to write this.


So… we’re all ‘VERY’ busy right? I mean DUH! If we weren’t, we wouldn’t feel important or feel we’re not ‘moving forward’ now would we? (total sarcasm, but I’m also a victim to waves of this false construct! Damn you society. I will find you… and I will… change you).

Personally, what has helped the quality of getting the most out of every day is a heightened awareness of my goals and vision. Then, pairing that with conscious and deliberate decisions to surround myself with those on that same path. It’s tough, because it’s often the gap between good to great and great to exceptional.




(a great reminder for myself included, as this; below, is what has worked for me in the past and advice I need to stick to now):



Unapologetically splatter it all over your notepad. Declutter that wonderful mind. All of it. In no particular order.




• Today
• 3 months
• 6 months
• 1 year
• 3 years

Now, allocate your ‘to-do’ list into those 5 buckets.




…in each ‘bucket’ that will create the biggest impact. Those two… that once executed, will create a ripple effect to your end goal. And remember, your end goals are linked to your values.

So if for instance, your values are:

• living with creativity
• commitment / loyalty and
• financial freedom

then your goals could be:

• ideation once a week (e.g. take a class in anything creative)
• being in a committed relationship
• action steps to a passive income stream.

From there, decide on actioning the two tasks that are going to give you the biggest percentage of attaining those results.




What I mean by that, is find the minimum time frame with which you can commit to that task every single day or every single week. My minimum for writing my book that i launched last year, was 10 minutes a day, every day. 9 months later, I had my manuscript. That was only made possible because I committed myself to a ‘minimum’ that worked for me.

Decide what you’re willing to commit to and stick to it. It’s usually a small time frame that is so little in fact, that procrastination becomes highly unlikely.




This was meant to be an Instagram post and has turned into a blog post. What the…? I’m stoked. Inspiration really does enter when you open the door for it.

Was this urgent? Nope. Was this important? You bloody know it.

It’s the same with parents choosing to get out of work at a decent hour to spend time with their kids, or you taking a 10 minute walk around the block away from your computer to get some sun and fresh air. All not urgent, but all, insanely important. 

What decisions have you made in your life to attend to what’s important? I’d love to know!

For more, pick up a copy of Ram Castillo’s internationally and industry-acclaimed book ‘How to Get a Job as a Designer, Guaranteed’.

If you found this post useful, please like/share it on FaceBook, Twitter and subscribe via email to this blog to receive free updates. Thank you!
Author: Ram Castillo

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About Ram Castillo


Ram is an award winning Design Director, Blogger, top ranking Podcaster, Speaker, Instructor and Author of two internationally acclaimed books 'How to get a job as a designer, guaranteed' and 'How to get a mentor as a designer, guaranteed'. He's based in Sydney, Australia and in 2012, started the blog which helps thousands of design students and graduates be employed. Ram has since been featured in Communication Arts, HOW magazine, Herman Miller, deFrost*, and Apple.

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