It can be hard keeping up with life these days. It seems as though people keep getting busier and busier. There’s always something else to do. And so many little distractions as well. It’s easy to get overwhelmed with your never ending To Do List, emails coming in all day, phone ringing, social media notifications going off, not to mention the information overload from different advertisers, posts on FaceBook, etc..
Today I’m going to give you a step-by-step guide, how to increase your productivity, and get your whole To Do List done each day, so you can go to bed feeling successful and accomplished!
So let’s start with setting out a proper To Do List so you can get started on it FIRST thing in the morning. Your productivity for tomorrow actually starts tonight, before you even go to bed. Start by getting out a pen and notepad that you can write everything down in.
Step 1: Write down absolutely EVERYTHING that you need to get done. This includes things that have to be done tomorrow, and even later on in the week. It includes the big super important things like your presentation for the meeting at work in a couple of days, to small things like picking up milk on the way home from work. The purpose of this step is to get everything off your MIND so that you can clear up all that mental space to take care of the important stuff.
Step 2: Now we’re going to sort the list. You’re going to write a number beside each task, on a scale of 1-10.
1 = would like to get done at some point, and 10 = MUST get done ASAP. So go ahead and give each item on your To Do List its rating.
Step 3: Great, good job! Now, on a new piece of paper, make three columns. The first column is labeled URGENT. The second is called SHOULD GET DONE, and the third column is for things that CAN WAIT to get done.
In your URGENT column, I want you to write down everything from your To Do List that has a rating of 7 or higher. These are usually bigger, perhaps more time and energy consuming tasks. You should only have 2-3 things on your list in this column per day.
In your SHOULD GET DONE column, write down everything that had a rating between 4-7. And in the final, CAN WAIT, column, go ahead and write down everything that was rated below a 4.
Step 4: The key to having a productive day and getting everything on your To Do List done, is having a limited number of things on each day’s list.
Every day you should have a maximum of 2-3 URGENT tasks, that need to get done. It’s best to get these big important things done first thing in the day so that you can start the day out feeling successful, and that way you won’t get side tracked either.
In your SHOULD GET DONE list, you can have 3-4 smaller, less important tasks written down each day. These are things that are quick and easy to finish, and don’t require much focus or concentration on your part.
The things in your CAN WAIT list, well guess what, they can wait! These little things should get their very own list, which you can take a quick peak at once you’ve already completed EVERYTHING on today’s To Do List. The funny thing that you’ll notice about this list is that quite often, the items here don’t really need to get done. And by consciously putting them on the back burner you allow yourself to free up extra time and energy to take care of the most important things in your life.
When you are making your daily To Do List the night before, it is EXTREMELY important to only put things on the list that you know for CERTAIN you can finish that day. You’ll learn how to increase your productivity and will be more successful at completing your To Do List if there are less items on it begging for your attention.
By categorizing everything you have to get done like we did before, it ensures that you’re only giving attention to the most important things first. So, in this case, LESS is MORE. Also, referring back to our last talk, [Click here if you haven’t read “The Power of Habit” post yet] by successfully completing your To Do List everyday, you are strengthening your habit of success!