First I want to give a little to-do list warning.
Warning!!! To-do lists can stop you from getting stuff done!!!
I’ve been there and you probably have too. We spend so much time on our to-do list, making lists for lists and we don’t get our STUFF done. So make sure that this is not happening to you. Make sure your to-do list supports you rather than adds to your busyness.
Have 3 to-do lists MAXIMUM
Why 3? Here’s my advice. These are the 3 lists I recommend:
- Have an ongoing to-do list for your personal life.
- Have an ongoing to-do list for your business life (this also includes work, study…)
- Have ONE today (or if you prefer this week) to-do list.
That’s it NO MORE!
How to use your ongoing to-do list.
If your life is anything like mine, you’ll be familiar with those “I need to…” moments.
I need to make an appointment for…
I need to arrange to meet…
I need to pay…
And in my business it might be ideas as well as things I need to remember to do.
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Writing it all down on my ongoing to-do list has been powerful for me. It means I can quickly make a note, I’ll know where it is and I don’t forget great ideas. I have a spiral notebook for my ongoing to-do list and just cross things off as I complete them. I write my business to-do list on left-hand pages and my personal to-do list on the right-hand pages so that I only use one book for everything.
Daily to-do list
Each day I check my ongoing to-do list and my diary and make my to-do list for the day. I usually use scrap paper for this so that I can throw it away once completed ~ so that I’m not cluttering up my work space.
These are the things I add.
- Scheduled appointments ~ This can be anything from picking my son up, doctors appointments to pre-arranged client calls.
- Any scheduled tasks for the day. For this, I check my Weekly Tasks Planner.
- Any project work I’m working on.
- Any chores such as running errands, phone calls I need to make, errands I need to run…
- Exercise. I always now add in things like go for a walk, do dance workout…
- Meals ~ I make a quick note of what I’m making for the evening meal.
- Anything I need to do with my son, such as check and sign homework planner.
- Anything I want to do for myself. Such as take some time out in the day to read my book, meditate…
What I don’t add to my to-do list.
Anything I do on a daily basis without needing a reminder.
- Get up, get dressed, eat breakfast
- Shower, brush teeth
- Feed dog, feed myself and my family
- Morning walk…
Adding these kinds of things to your to-do list just adds more time pressure to your life. Yes, you might get some satisfaction being able to cross them off but they are seriously not helping you.
I also don’t tend to add family time. In our home in general once my business day is finished, homework is done and everything’s sorted for the next day, it’s just time to enjoy being a family and doing the things we want to do . This is just a normal part of my day to day life. I don’t need it to be on my to-do list.
The things I’ve added are right for me. Of course, your to do list will have all kinds of different things on it. But from experience this is an effective method for using your to-do lists.
I hope this tip has helped you.
This blog post is part of a series. To read the rest of my time-management tips, go to Time-Management
OVER TO YOU
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