Making a Big "To Do"
Sometimes just attempting to craft our "To Do" list can be overwhelming, let alone actually tackling all the items on it. Here are some tips I've learned over the years:
- Make more than one list. Instead of one list, split your list into three categories: Today, Soon and Someday. If you write down 17 tasks to do and then, at the end of the day, you've only been able to cross off 4 items, you'll feel defeated. The first list is what you have to do today. The second is what you want to do if there is time and the third list holds those projects you may never get around to but would feel oh-so organized if you did!
WMN Note: Try putting your "soon" and "someday" tasks in a document like Excel which will allow you add dates due and dates done!
- Micro-prioritize each list. Even the things on your Today list will need to be in order. You can either write them in order of importance. (That usually takes a couple of tries and involves erasing and frustration.) Or, make the list and then wield a bright colored highlighter. Highlight only the first thing or two you must do. When they are done, cross them off and highlight something else. This way, it doesn't matter if they are in perfect order.
- Categorize your Today list. If you want to get even more specific, split your Today list into three categories: To Do, To Call and Computer. This helps you to see your work in chunks. Do you have lots of computer work to do like answering and sending emails, writing, or ordering items online? How many phone calls must you make for that project at church or for your son's baseball team party?
This way, you can decide when it is best to do those tasks. If you have a half hour of calls to make and your child needs to be at his game 45 minutes before it starts, you can drop him off, go grab a coffee, head back to the ball diamond, position you lawn chair where you'll get a good view, and make your calls until the game starts and you have to start cheering.
WMN Note: Click here for a download page you can print and divide your today tasks into categories. It is a Word document that you can change and make the categories your own!
With a little planning and creative list-making, your many tasks will soon go from "To Do" to "All Done"!
WMN Bonus: Enter to win a copy of Untangling Christmas eBook and a $10 Target gift card so you can make the Untangling Christmas planner. Enter the drawing by telling us how you manage your priorities.
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What is your best organizational tip?
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Karen Ehman, www.karenehman.com, is the Director of Speakers at Proverbs 31 Ministries. A five-time author, her passion is to help women simplify life and glorify God. She and her college sweetheart have been married for 25 years and are the parents of three sometimes argumentative, but mostly charming children: Kenna 20, Mitch 16 and Spence 13.
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