How I Managed To Shorten My To Do List To Do More

Have you ever had a long list of labors and it was so overwhelming that you completely ignored it?

This is me every day haha. But when you do all the things you need to do ASAP you feel golden afterward. However, I’ve managed to find a way to structure my days to execute said tasks at hand to make the list even shorter! I’m so proud of this because I’m not sure why I haven’t thought of it before and once I thought of it–did it and it worked. 

Do just that. Make your list shorter. Instead of having a long list of things to do, break it up into multiple categories. 

Ask these questions:

  • What are the most profitable tasks? <—These go to the top of the list, no question. On a workday.
  • What is for the home? <— This could be chores
  • What is for my health — mental or physical?
  • What is self care?
  • What is for others?
  • What do I not want to do / do the least? 

I’ve tried for months these productivity hacks to see which worked best. 

First, I had a really long to do list and would just scrap it because it was so overwhelming.

Then, I tried shortening it into 3 little tasks or a handful of the most profitable tasks every day that I knew I had to do first each morning.

Finally, what did work was having the really long list, categorizing each part of the list, and perform each tasks right away so I wouldn’t have to worry about it later. 

Mark Twain’s proverbial, “eating the frog” has started to work for me a little bit and my long list, though still long with things I need to do feels shorter as I remove items carrying out duties. Doing the things you don’t want to do first to lift the unnecessary weight from your shoulders really does you a diligent different.

Another method of engaging in highly productive responsibilities is the journaling system. My husband has been using this, but it feels really complicated and a lot of work to me as a standalone procedure for accomplishing anything. Read more here on why you should follow your own instincts above anyone else’s advice.

It starts off with writing each item you really want to get done down in a list format. Then marking a number 1-10 (10 being the high quality performance of fulfilling the task) next to the piece of business to see how well you think you completed the idea. 

If you can give each task a 10 that you’ve done every day of the week, you’ve reached culmination of your to do list and either come up with new challenges to finish or make this your staple, stalwart routine.

I’m a fan of this methodology to see quality in performance, however holding myself accountable to the same ideas every single day is boring also knowing that I do my work with 110% effort. Half-assing a job is not in my vision.

What’s something you do to stay on top of work in the highest productive state? Have you tried any of these options or implemented your own practice(s)? I’d love to know more in the comments. 

Gia G. Dixon
Gia G. Dixon

I’m Gia G. Dixon, an etiquette consultant certified under Royal Charter of King Charles III. Here is my guide to elegant style, high quality living, and little things that make your daily life glamorous.

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