7 Steps to Finishing Your List

When time is limited and you have a long to-do list, how do you decide what to tackle?  They all seem crucial, these bullets on your list, but you must choose some over others.

1.  Write out the list of all the things you have to do.  Here is an example:


2.    Beside each put the amount of time needed. Maybe 1/2 hr, 3/4 hr, 15 min, 2 hr, 1 hr, 15 min, 1/2 hr, 2 hrs, 10 min.
3.    Now pick which one you want to do the most and which you are most dreading. My least favorite would be doing the 22nd rewrite of chapter one.  Writing the blog post would be the most fun.  Do them, maybe in tandem.
4.    Pick a short one and go do it right now.  Sew on those two buttons and you’ll get a reward.  What is it?  Crossing the job off the list.
5.    While you’re happier than a pig in poop, tackle the one you most dread.  Rewrite chapter one and get ready to weigh less as you knock that heavy weight off your back.  Now you’re cookin’.  And it didn’t take as long as you thought.
6.    Quick, hit Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn for 15 min.  Walking the dog is exercise so you can cross two off your list if you do them.
7.     Start working on the video and you’ll have a head start on tomorrow.

Before you’re done for the day, write out tomorrow’s list.  Put on the things you didn’t finish today, remember to add some short and long tasks, and you’re ready.  Turn off the computer and see where your sweetie wants to take you for supper.

How do you react when your time is too short for your long list?  Any tricks you’d like to share? Consider leaving a comment, just for fun.

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2 thoughts on “7 Steps to Finishing Your List

  1. Elaine, I love the way you often do your blog articles in lists. It makes them concise and easy for the readers. I am a list person too and every week I share my goals with 3 writing friends. It does feel good to cross things off and helps to stay organized and working toward that end goal–a publishable book. I like your idea of assigning time limits–that would work well!

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    • Thanks, Sharon! I move between using lists most days and ignoring them others, the reason being that I start to get stressed. I have learned not to date my lists unless absolutely necessary as a bunch of dated, unfinished lists totally defeats my purpose. I’m trying to make my inner person happy so she’ll get more accomplished. Maybe even a book!

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