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3 Reasons Why You Absolutely Need to Use to Do Lists

Apr 11, 2019Lifestyle

For some people, writing out to do lists for the day, week, month, or year, just comes naturally. For some other people, however, the entire exercise seems either needlessly stressful, or else just completely pointless in its entirety.

Suffice to say, the people who don’t believe in using to-do lists are wrong.

There are many different ways to use to do lists effectively. You could write them down on stray scraps of paper, if that’s your thing, or you could use a reactive sort of system for organising your days, like a Bullet Journal. Then again, maybe a digital to-do list app such as Wunderlist would work best for you.

Feel free to try out different templates and formats. But here are some reasons why you absolutely need to use to do lists, one way or the other.

1.  Because you’re guaranteed to forget things unless you do

Let’s face it, if you have to go and work all day (and remember all the different obligations you have at your day job), then need to stop at the grocery store and collect a dozen things, then need to stop by your kid’s dance recital, and then need to buy BMW antifreeze coolant, something’s going to get forgotten unless you’re writing things down.

The human mind is pretty good at coming up with ideas, but it’s not necessarily great at holding onto them all. That’s the analysis of David Allen, creator of the famous Getting Things Done task management method.

By writing out to do lists, you massively reduce the chances that you’re going to forget something important, and cause trouble of yourself as a result.

2.  Because it’s really satisfying crossing off an item on your list

There are a lot of people who are really interested in why video games are so popular. An entire professional practice known as “gamification” has been developed on the back of this interest, and attempts to apply some of the popular elements of video games to other products and services in everyday life.

One of the clear components of gamification, and a core reason why video games are so popular in general, is the assignment of small, manageable goals, followed by rewards for achieving them.

Using to-do lists mirrors this dynamic in a number of ways. Perhaps most importantly, it’s just really satisfying crossing an item off your list. That satisfaction alone may keep you motivated to be productive throughout the day.

3.  Because planning helps you to get the most you possibly can out of your life

If you have a vague idea of what you want out of life, and you try and pursue that goal in an unfocused kind of away, the odds aren’t great that you’re going to achieve your full potential.

To-do lists are a form of planning, and it can really help you to have a structured approach to attaining your goals, and then to executing on your plans.

Sitting down, thinking about what you need to achieve, then listing out the steps to go after, can do you a lot of good.

How do you organize your to-do lists and crush your goals?  Comment below!


[a contributed post]


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