I am a huge fan of ‘to-do’ lists. I honestly, cannot function without a ‘to-do’ list. Some people write a daily ‘to-do’ list. Well, ahem!! I write a ‘to-do’ list for the whole year, each month, each week and each day. I know, this sounds crazy but I am probably bit of a control freak. I think gradually I would progress to write a ‘to-do’ list for every hour (I occasionally do that using post-its). I know, I am sounding like Sheldon Cooper but I do love that guy. I binge watch his antics.
On the second day of January, I write the ‘to-do’ list for the entire year. Incidentally, second January is the birthday of Daisaku Ikeda, my spiritual mentor. Every year, on his birthday, I write down the things that I wish to accomplish that year.
I also set monthly and weekly goals, however, they are not always written down. I diligently write down the ‘to-do’ list for the next day before going to bed, every night. At night, after finishing all my work, I sit down with my journals. First I tick off the things that I accomplished doing from my ‘to-do’ list and then write down the ‘to-do’ list for the next day. Then I start writing my gratitude journal. Writing a gratitude journal is an easy way to feel happy in life. We always look at the black spots in our lives but a gratitude journal helps us look at the brighter side. After writing my journals, I chant my prayers and then go off to sleep.
The ‘to-do’ lists that I write are divided into 3-4 sections. The first section is dedicated to daily chores like laundry, dusting, exhaustive cleaning etc. The second section contains the menu for the day. I like to pre-plan the menu a day in advance, some people plan a menu in advance for the whole week, but for me a day before works well. The third section is for my office work, the emails that I need to sent, the follow-ups that I need to do etc. The fourth section is dedicated to my health goals. I added this section recently after I realised that my body is no more as healthy as it used to be even a year back. Therefore, I felt it important to take special care of myself.
The benefits of a ‘to-do’ list are:
- They help you keep track of the tasks that we otherwise tend to forget
- They help you stay motivated to finish the task
- They give you satisfaction when you realise that you have completed work from your list
- They help you organise your work better
- They help you manage your time
- They reduce your stress level as you are aware of what has to be done and when
When you write a ‘to-do’ list allocate time for each thing. Dedicate time for the mundane and routine things also. For example, I dedicate time for each things like watering the plants, bathing, watching TV etc. When you do this you are in control of time and that helps you not to waste time. If I have dedicated my TV time from 1pm-2pm then if I watch TV till 2.15pm, I become aware that I have spent extra 15 minutes and that means now I have 15 minutes less time to finish writing my emails.
A ‘to-do’ list can be beneficial for everyone from a homemaker to a student and a retired person to a employed person. I love to be organised and a ‘to-do’ list is the best way to help me stay organized. I have noticed that my work doesn’t get done on days when I don’t write a ‘to-do’ list. I become lazy and start procrastinating without a list. Therefore, for me the best way to get work done is by following a ‘to-do’ list.
Are you like me? or do you feel that writing a detailed ‘to-do’ list is nothing but waste of time. Do let me know.