The thought of to-do lists may seem a little overwhelming for some – especially those who have never tried one in the first place. While some people don’t see the importance of creating lists, they can be super helpful for those who juggle many things in a day. Now, if you’ve tried creating a to-do list once and didn’t find it as helpful as you imagined, don’t throw the towel in just yet! Check out these four simple tricks to help you create a better to-do list.
#1 Stick to Simplicity
When creating a list one can easily go down the rabbit hole of listing everything they don’t need compared to the key items that should get done. Depending on what your day looks like, perhaps start your list with simple agenda items such as bills. Bills can include anything such as phone, car and utilities.
Another item on your list could be personal and self-care needs. It can include items such as picking up facial products, scheduling manicure and pedicure for the upcoming week or any hair appointments that you have been putting off just because you haven’t found the time to get it done.
Making sure your list is to the point will help keep your life simple. There’s nothing more intimidating than a Nile River long to-do list. The simpler it is, the more confident you will find it to be clear.
#2 Stay on Track
When you have your curated list, it will definitely keep you on track with any goals you have placed for yourself. The infamous question “How can you plan your to-do list when you’re so busy to-doing it!?!” The answer is simple, a person makes time for what they find valuable. Once your list is made, you can set reminders for yourself to help you not lose momentum.
You know you have an inquiry about a bill, so carve an hour of your day tackling that as the hold time and speaking with a rep could take a while. The trick is to give yourself more time than you need, and if you don’t need it all, you can move to the next item on your list! Now, I’m not saying live a robotic life with schedules and lists, but I highly encourage you to apply lists to your life where you notice a lack of focus.
#3 Get Creative
Lists in general can be very BORING, so get creative and make it interesting. Celebrating the small victories you do have will give you the confidence to approach the greater challenges. Consider incorporating color coding, in which you use different color highlighters or pens to code what type of item is what.
Maybe yellow can be used as completed, items in pink are urgent, and blue can be used as working on. As a friendly reminder, if something is living on your list for too long there is a high possibility it will not get to-done, so color coding what items are completed and what still needs to be worked on can help you avoid that mistake.
#4 Choose a Platform
There are so many helpful mediums to keep you on track and productive – trust me, you can’t go wrong! Or if you prefer kicking it old school with writing your lists, that works too! The goal is to keep your life organized and for you to be less stressed.
Once a platform is decided to try to stick with it, no matter how different it can feel in the beginning, it will become muscle memory and before you know it, you’re not just going to live life but actually enjoy it!
I encourage you to pick a day and time each week to set aside to jot down your items that need to get tackled. You can start for the week and from there expand out but be sure to be realistic and not burn yourself out. Check out the CGS Podcast Episode: How Planning Changed Her Life with Alaina Fingal for even more tips to successfully planning your day!
Related: Tackling Your To-Do List
We all have the same amount of time in a day, so it’s beneficial if we use that time appropriately. Sure, some may have a better leg up, but it doesn’t matter how you start, just how you finish! What’s a simple trick you’ve used that you’ve found helpful in creating your to do lists? Have you tried any of the tips suggested? If so, how did it work out for you?
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