I make lists for everything and anything, every day on anything I can find to write a list on. I have lists for shopping, work, household chores, what to pack on holiday, what needs to be done each day with school runs, clubs etc.. you name it I write a list about it. It drives my family crazy having lots of lists pinned all over the house. My husband thinks I am obsessed and addicted to making lists. He will ask me ‘What are your plans for to day?’ I will reply ‘Umm’ as I check the list I wrote the night before.
So it made me think, am I just a very organised person or am I addicted to list making?
As a child I watched my mum write lists for shopping, housework, etc.. and she was always on the ball and nothing got forgotten so I guess I got the the list bug from her. But I enjoy putting pen to paper and having the time to think through what needs to be done as well as the enjoyment of putting a big tick or crossing through the things I have done. It makes me feel happy and that I have achieved something living in a very busy, hectic life.
It’s Important to prioritize everything you have to get done through out the day as a high priority or a low priority. Your high priority things should the things you cannot finish the day without doing. Such as shopping, picking the children up from school, cooking meals, paying bills etc .. The low priority things could be weeding the garden, posting letters and all the things that, if it does not get done today, it really does not matter because they can be done tomorrow.
I take a piece of paper and draw a line down the centre. At the top of the first column I write A and on the second column I write B. The A list is my high priority things and, yes you got it, on my B list is my low priority things that need to get done. I then start the day working down my A list, crossing off as I go along. Once this list is complete I then move on to list B. By the end of the day if list B is not all marked off I don’t worry because I know I can always complete these tasks tomorrow.
Productivity is not about the number of tasks you cross off but rather the progress you make towards your goals.
Advanced planning (list making) can help you achieve your goals in life, whether this may be a simple list of all the things you need to get done this week or the job you would like to have, new hobbies you would like to learn, the next holiday etc… Taking a plan sheet of paper and writing down a list of tasks you would like to achieve in this next week, month or year I have found really productive with the end result, resulting in everything being completed with out the stress build up.
These advanced list can be added to or crossed off from at any time which is great as life does not always bend around all the corners we would like it to.
I have found waking up and looking at the list of things I have to do, that i just want to go and climb back into bed and miss the day out completely. Some days are just too daunting than others! But by adding how long I would like to spend on each task makes it a lot less daunting. For example if my list says clean my Children’s bedroom I would put 15 minutes next to this task. although this task could take me all day, which is why I dread going in there and doing a good tidy up. (They are 4 and 5 years so I hope that explains why) I go in there and do 15 minutes then go and do something else on my list and come back for another 15 minutes and continue with this routine, When that task is complete it does not feel it took me 3 hours because I did the task in 15 minute bite sizes.
I put times next to all the tasks on my lists which I find not only gets everything done because I don’t get stuck on just one task but also my day is varied and i don’t just give up on the list of tasks after the 1st or 2nd item on the list.
Do you enjoy making lists? What tips do you use when making your lists and completing the tasks on your list?