We’re all guilty of chucking stuff on our to-do list after we’ve done it so we can cross it off, right? Or putting pointless tasks on there that are easily achieved, again just so we get the satisfaction of ticking something off?
Believe it or not, there is an art to organising your to-do list. Streamline your bullet points and take back control with our tips for writing the perfect list.
1. Base your activity on your energy levels
Don’t try and take on tasks when you’re not feeling great. If you’re having a bad day where your mood is low or you’re physically not feeling great, focus on lower energy tasks, or even tasks that are more enjoyable. That way it won’t feel like such a struggle to complete basic tasks on your list. And when you’re feeling more active you can really push through the more time or energy-consuming tasks.
Another way of considering this is to top-load your day by putting the more taxing tasks at the start of the day when you’re likely to have more energy. This means that your afternoon, when you might be tired, is lighter and you can tackle the easier tasks.
2. Bullet Journal
The bullet journal is a great method of making lists that takes everything month by month. You divide your list by events, tasks and notes, and cross everything off as you go. Anything that isn’t completed just migrates to the next month. Simple! This breaks everything down with simple categories and allows you to carry things over to the next month rather than stalling on the same list.
3. To Do | Doing | Done
Instead of lumping everything into one list, how about dividing it into three? Try adopting a large whiteboard at home or in the office and writing three lists: to do, doing, done. You can migrate tasks as you go along and monitor your progress throughout the day, week or month. This way you’re keeping track of where you are at with each task, and also reminding yourself that you have achieved some things.
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4. Work/Life Divide
Don’t chuck your home/life tasks on the same list as your work tasks – it’ll complicate the list and make it seem endless.
A better way to organise is to divide the list so that you have two separate sections for work and life. This also creates a distinction between the two so that they don’t affect one another – during the working day you won’t be reminded of what you need to achieve at home, and when you’re home on the weekend, you won’t be reminded of work emails that need sending.