Okay, so Time Management 101 starts again today. I’m revisiting habits that help me get things done on the work end of things as that is currently my arch enemy. First up, list, sort, label.
I am a big fan of lists. Big. HUGE. Lists, labels, folders, office supplies. I get giddy just thinking about a trip to Office Max. But, all jokes aside, lists are a simple and effective way to stay on track and keep up the work superhero status quo (cape optional).
My newest and most useful list is one I visit daily. I spend five to ten minutes making a “Hot Ticket Items” list when I get up. These are the top five most urgent priorities for my day. I have Three major categories with some sub categories in those.
Because I have a serious aversion to cluttered to-do lists, I make mine on google drive. You could also try workflowy, a free and super cool app to make all kinds of badass lists. In any case, my categories are:
- Life is Beautiful
- Retail Therapy
The HANDLE THIS category is obviously for the top five priorities for me for the day in each area. I keep the list of up to five, and only five. If I put more than five on there I can almost guarantee I won’t be successful, and that entirely defeats the point. If one task is really big, and will override the others, then that’s all I put on the list.
For things beyond five but that I want to remember I throw them into IN THE NEAR FUTURE. That part of the list serves as somewhat of a brain dump, or a running ticker tape of things I want to remember and it sincerely eases my stress just putting it down “on paper.” Later, if it happens to no longer be my responsibility or I don’t care to do it anymore, I just hit delete and presto- item vanished and beautiful tidy list is still intact.
The IN THE SHOPPING CART lists includes things like food, household or beauty supplies etc…, separated in categories so if I happen to have a few extra minutes here and there I can run in to the nearest general store and grab them. And by run in I mean plan to go in for toilet paper and bananas and leave with $200 of stuff I saw on my way to get the bananas and threw into my basket and/or carried in my arms, balanced on my head or dangled from my foot since I refused to get a cart because I was “just” getting two things.
In any case, the subcategories are helpful, like the “retail therapy” section- that is reserved for things that I claim to “need” as I search through my enormous collection of clothes and still find nothing to wear (sidenote- in my last professional life I had the funds and job status to warrant this, I swear). It’s also where I list stuff my kids could use, like new soccer cleats, a winter coat etc… It is hands down my favorite category because I.love.to.shop.
So far, this process has been incredibly helpful. Yesterday I used it and I actually got stuff done. Today I woke up, looked at yesterdays list, deleted things I accomplished and moved things from IN THE NEAR FUTURE to HANDLE THIS. Woot woot! This is step one of refocusing, more tips to come soon, but those are not on today’s list.
May your day be productive, your smiles big and your heart full. Peace out.
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