The Old Fashioned To-Do List Works!

I’veTo Do List had a variety of ways to keep track of what needed to be done.  It seems with each new season, a new method creeps up.  Like alternating aspirin brands or hot and cold packs – the constant change keeps either from being ineffective.

For the longest time, I wrote stuff down I needed to get done each day, then took the list with me the next morning.  Things changed when I got a smart phone a few years back. I went through several seasons of keeping track of stuff on phone notes, then to sending emails to myself and even trying a to-do list app.  Each seemed to work for a while.

But the other night, I took out a piece of paper, cut it half, made a list and schedule for the next day, complete with time goals and voila!  I got it all finished with room to spare. I felt accomplished.

I once heard the story of a CEO who invited a consultant into his organization to increase employee productivity.  The consultant gave them one piece of advice.  He asked each employee to write down the six things they were planning to accomplish the next day.  Then, when the next day came, they had to start with the first item on the list and not move to item number two until the first one was complete. They needed to do this until they were finished with the list. The CEO was a little turned off by how simplified the consultant’s advice was, but offered to find out what he owed the consultant.  The consultant simply said, “pay me what you think it’s worth after three weeks”.

Before the three weeks went by, the CEO had written a check to the consultant for $500,000!  It had improved productivity by a huge percentage.

So, I’m back to the original method.  I make my list on a half sheet of construction paper.  I begin with the key components to the morning routine (something about writing it down makes it more likely to happen).  Exercise, read Scripture, write, etc.  Then I move to items that need to get accomplished, meetings, appointments. From there, I make time goals for each block of tasks.

I’m looking forward to using this system for a while – then I’ll start hunting around for a new app or something else.  Now, when I find a delegation app, I will definitely have someone download it for me.


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Today’s Post

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