To-do lists are a mixed bag for me. On one hand, they’re great for getting organized and prioritizing your daily tasks. On the other hand, if you’re not using them properly (like I’ve seen many entrepreneurs do) you run the risk of derailing your entire day.
Luckily, I’m not the only person who thinks this. I read a great article on Forbes that discusses “Organizing Tomorrow Today”. In his article, Jason Selk discusses the many benefits of planning for the future, something I’ve discussed in my previous posts. I encourage you to read the full article, but here are the two most important points I was able to take from it:
Your To-Do List Is Wrong: Like I mentioned, most people tend to make a massive to-do list full of both important and unimportant items. Simply listing off what’s on your plate is a waste of time. Instead, organize your list in terms that makes sense to you. Selk encourages that you list off your top three tasks of the day, followed by lesser tasks. What I do personally is organize my most important tasks of the day, and then group my lesser tasks into a separate category called “end of the week”. Whatever method you use, the main thing to remember is that you have to start off your day with your most important task, instead of tackling the less important items first. Otherwise, you’ll fall into the trap of constantly completing your simple tasks first, and never getting around to actually finishing what matters.
Take The Time To Plan Ahead: Arguably the most important thing that Selk says in his article is that no matter what, take the time to plan ahead. Don’t leave all of your future planning to the morning of said day. Take ten to fifteen minutes the day before to figure out what needs to be done first, what can wait until throughout the week, and what you can delegate. Selk summarizes this point nicely: “Highly successful people do not get everything done each day, not even close. They have learned to get the most important tasks completed, and then to do their best to get the rest done.”
All in all, the most successful entrepreneurs know the importance of prioritizing their tasks, and they also know the best method to complete them. Let me know how you tackle your important tasks and we can discuss it in detail in the comments below.