and it might change your attitude towards your to do list
Who doesn’t have that ever re-accruing task on their to do list; I used to have ‘finish Max photo album’ on it; week after week after week; till I decided to just not put it on there anymore and wait till that Max is moved out and I have time and will enjoy a bit of simple scrapbooking.
Another idea to get things off your to do list – and actually DO them, is to break it down into smaller tasks and label them with smaller words that don’t scare you off as soon as you read them. So for the above mentioned example; rather than saying ‘finish photo album’ which I knew would take 40 hours, I should have written down more specific tasks:
So instead of ‘finish’ it could say ‘sort photos for 30 min’ or even ‘play with photos for 30 min’. I might find the time for that and will enjoy that. My brain knows that finishing the photo Albums of 4 years of pre digital prints is completely out of the question so I am boycotting myself if I even put it on my list.
This goes for business tasks, too. Don’t call it creating a marketing plan – a very open ended and intense verb; instead use write or start or brainstorm 10 possibilities, which is much more concrete and finite task. Then next week doesn’t have the same ‘create marketing plan’ on the list, but something like continue, or detail brainstorming to one page… and so on.
If you find breaking it into small tasks too hard, try putting a time limit to it. 30 min will get you somewhere and is much easier to get started. A good tool to do it this way is the Pomodore Method