Making a to-do list is a great way to see at a glance what you need to get accomplished in a day.
However, some to-to lists help productivity more than others, and a bad to-do list might do more harm than good.
If you can invest a little bit of time planning out your tasks for the day in a clear and achievable list you will be able to accomplish things much more smoothly.
Here are a few ways that you can make the best to-do list possible:
- Break it down. Adding a huge task such as “clean the house” to your to-do list can overwhelm you. Divide this task into several small jobs so that you know where to start, such as “wash the dishes”, “sweep the floors”, and “vacuum the carpets.”
- Group tasks together that are located in close proximity to each other. For example, if you are driving to the shop to pick up bread and milk and you also have a package to mail you can drop it off at the post office on the way there. It is inefficient just to go out and only accomplish one task at a time.
- Prioritize the things that you need to do by urgency. This will help you know which items are more important and need to be finished first. You can create a system with colors or numbers to organize your tasks.
- If you have bumped a task from yesterday that you couldn’t get finished, this job should get a higher priority today or you will continue to put it off.
- Don’t make your to-do list so long that it is impossible to achieve in one day. This can be very demoralizing. Include small and easily checked-off tasks which will give you positive reinforcement and provide momentum.
Above all, don’t forget to include a reward at the end when you finish everything you set out to do. Whether it is going for a walk with the dog, relaxing for a while to watch your favorite show, or going out with friends, if you achieve all of the goals on your list feel free to celebrate your productive day!