How to use To-do lists in the most productive way

A To-Do list is a simple, efficient tool that can be used in your personal and professional life. 

Over the years, To-Do lists have become extremely popular productivity tools. 
There are several ways of maintaining your lists. Today, you can use many tools, such as Todoist, Microsoft To-Do, Google Task, or Trello.

10 Benefits of Organized To-do Lists

  1. Easier to manage and organize your life.
  2. Break down your goals into simple smaller tasks. 
  3. See the bigger picture.
  4. Set your priorities.
  5. Measure progress more easily.
  6. More mental bandwidth.
  7. Remember things.
  8. Manage your time better.
  9. Boost your motivation levels.
  10. Visualize your workload using tools like Kanban.

But To-Do lists don’t work for everyone if not done correctly. Keep the following points in mind to ensure that your lists work effectively for you.

  • Don’t make them and forget them. Keep your lists updated. Regularly plan and update your lists. 
  • Don’t only have a never-ending list of tasks. Have 3 – 5 bigger tasks on your to-do list per day.
  • Prioritize tasks on your to-do list; most important to least important. Start with the most important tasks.
  • Do not include every little task in your list. Break down into tasks that can be performed in a 2-hour working flow.
  • Ensure your list resonates with your values and mission. Keep it interesting so that you stay motivated.

There are many types of lists that you can choose from.

  • The Vision list or bucket list is used for long-term planning. Enables you to stay motivated when you feel down and out.
  • The Maybe someday list is almost like an offshoot of the vision list. Add tasks here that you’d like to accomplish someday but are not sure if you want them done right now.
  • The 100-day list is also a quarterly list. In this list, the focus is on the next 3 months considering the current life vision and situation. 
  • The Weekly list is a plan for the week in advance. The Kanban board is the best possible way to visualize your weekly workflow.
  • The Done list or anti-to-do list is a list of all the tasks you have completed in a certain period of time. Looking at this list is definitely going to lift up your mood.
  • The Daily 3T list has the 3 main tasks that you need to do that day. Start every single working day with a morning planning meeting. A daily SCRUM typically answers:
    • What did I do yesterday?
    • What do I plan to do today?
    • Is there anything preventing me from achieving my goals?
  • The Not-to-do list is a list of tasks you simply don’t do. You delete them, delegate them, outsource them, or simply say no to them.
  • The Kaizen list has a list of prioritized potential improvements in your life. These may be identified by you and the people closest to you.
  • A Reading list as the name suggests is a list of books you want to read; now or whenever you can. 

You may need to keep different To-do lists and use different tools to visualize your lists.


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