Did you know?
According to surveys conducted by Sasha Cagen, a self-professed To-Do-Listologist (love that title):
Prefer the experience of writing their ToDo List with pen and paper! People tend to feel more accountable when the list is in their own handwriting.
People say their lives are better with ToDo Lists.
Have made a list describing their ideal mate!
I love a good ToDo List however I’m noticing in a lot of productivity coaching conversations and workshops lately that ToDo List overwhelm is running rampant.
“I’ve got 3 pages back to back of things to do. I don’t know where to start.”
“I’ve got lists for my lists.”
“I keep an online ToDo List in the back of my day book but I rarely look at the list simply because I know it will overwhelm me, I’ve got no idea where to start.”
It’s a like when you look at a food menu and there’s so many choices you can’t make a choice!
A ToDo List is a great place to capture all those tasks, ideas, odd jobs that you want to do, follow up on, or know need to get done at some point in time.
According to a study reported in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, researchers Masicampo and Baumeister, determined that the act of writing a plan – jotting stuff down on the ToDo List – has been proven to reduce anxiety and help maintain focus while conducting other tasks.
From ToDo to Today
So what’s happening that the ToDo Lists are more overwhelming rather than productive? The secret lies in making a smaller Today List. A Today List takes a small number of tasks off the ToDo List and are either scheduled into the calendar as appointments so they have time allocated, or they are smaller tasks that can happen in the gaps or cracks of the day. The gap or cracks are those pockets of time between meetings, waiting for others, between interruptions. Whether your tasks are scheduled or held ready for the gaps in the day, or a combination of both, can depend on your type of job function and how you like to work.
I’d love to know your thoughts…
You may find this quick video helpful: