Weekend Activity: 6 Ways To Keep Your To-Do List Under Control
Is your to-do list getting too long? Do you feel like you and your partner do not get enough time to relax over the weekend because there is always something on your list?
Use this weekend to be fiercely productive and check off those items that have been hanging out on your list for way too long.
To-do lists are never-ending. It seems as though two new items are added for every one checked off. To make your list more manageable, follow the tips listed below.
6 Ways To Keep Your To-Do List Under Control
1) Be specific.
Instead of adding “Clean Garage”, it may be more helpful to outline what tasks need to be completed in order for you to have a clean garage. Maybe this item can be broken down as follows: “purchase plastic bins for organization”, “remove all items from garage and clean floor”, and “divide items and place them in their respective bins.” Breaking items down into smaller tasks leads to the next tip.
2) One thing at a time.
Concentrate on the task at hand. If you are like me, looking at a large to-do list is very overwhelming. Sometimes I will freeze when I see too many tasks in front of me and get nothing done (because I am obsessing over all that has to be done). By choosing one task – and only concentrating on this task – you can breeze through your list and have the satisfaction of checking things off in record time.
Place your tasks in order of importance. For today’s list, washing your car may not be as important as picking up your partner’s birthday gift (when their birthday is tomorrow). Take a look at your list and ask yourself what can wait. Or better yet…
4) Pick something to stop doing.
Yes, you heard me right. Find something on your to-do list and DON’T do it. There’s probably at least one item, if not more, that was added because it is something you thought would be nice to accomplish but it is not necessary for your immediate well-being.
An example of this for me is organizing my storage room. It’s actually not that bad and I can still find things. It is also in an area that no one else sees. Therefore, this is something that I can just remove from my list for the time being.
If you are having a difficult time choosing something to remove, frame it this way…”what on my list does not add value to my life?” If the tasks on your to-do list are not enriching your life, it’s probably okay to remove them.
5) Be realistic.
Be realistic about the tasks you choose to add to your list. Are you making a “dream” to-do list with things that you know you will probably never get to? Take a minute to think about each item before you pencil them in.
For example, do you have a major landscaping project that you would like to complete in your yard? I know I do. But this may be something that will not be feasible until 1 or 2 years from now. Don’t let a major project like this clutter up your list. Only add things to your list that you are likely to accomplish within the next two weeks.
6) Ask for help.
Look over your list and see what you and your partner can get done together. Or if it is a large task, enlist the help of some friends (but, be sure to provide them with some food and drinks for their help).
If you and your partner decide to work on a task together, I offer a word of caution: I know of a couple who actually got into an argument over how to load the dishwasher. Don’t let this be you!
Another way to ask for help when it comes to you and your partner’s to-do lists is to give and accept input on each other’s lists. Look over your partner’s list and see if it follows along with some of these recommendations. Are there things they can get rid of or adapt? Are there tasks that you would enjoy helping out with?
This concept will be covered in more depth in a future post, but accepting influence from your partner is a great conflict management skill!
Don’t waste time! Get started today! The successful completion of this activity will prepare you for next week’s Weekend Activity.
Stay tuned for a new and inspiring post on Monday…
and check back next Thursday for a new Weekend Activity!