I was recently asked if I felt parents should encourage their children to be made to do their chores before they were allowed to play?

It was an interesting question because I understand the value of choice. However, I also value the power of priorities and the joy that play brings because the work is done first.

So my answer to this question and my answer to anyone interested, is that doing the "worst first" principle will make for stronger character, more accomplishment and deeper joys than any other promoted sequence.

As it should be with children's priorities, so it should be with us. When doing housework, do the dusting first if you don't like it. Then all the rest of the housework will be just slightly easier because the worst is over.

If you have several batches of outstanding wash and really don't enjoy folding socks, do that batch first and get it over with so the rest of the wash will be nicely pleasant.

If you need to clean up the kitchen and don't particularly like to sweep under the table, do it first.

As we prepare for the holidays, there are several items that are less interesting, fun or otherwise enjoyable for each of us.

As I approach December, I will do a Christmas "worst first" project. It is getting my greeting cards prepared, my letter written, and the whole job done and in the mailbox toward the first of the month.

I can almost feel my Christmas excitement grow with the thought. It's funny how much I enjoy getting Christmas cards and letters from friends and family at the other end of the month!

Good luck to you this week! Remember doing the "worst first" always makes the "rest best"! What will your next "worst first" project be?

Marie C. Ricks is a motivational speaker and the author of a new book, "Project Organization, Quick and Easy Ways to Organize Your Life." To order her products, offer comments or suggestions, go to www.houseoforder.com. © Marie Calder Ricks/House of Order