Why To-Do Lists Don’t Work

If you're not getting far on your daily to-do lists, maybe the problem isn't with the tasks, but with the lists themselves.
January 22, 2013

How far did you get on your to-do list today? How many times have you rewritten it with almost the same tasks on it? Most to-do lists don’t work because they're either too long, unrealistic or don’t really say what you want to get done today. 

Jason Womack, author of Your Best Just Got Better: Work Smarter, Think Bigger, Make More, suggests a different approach to getting organized and practicing good time management. He believes before writing down daily tasks, it's important to define what the ideal day would actually look like. Womack says this helps him better mentally prepare to have the best day, and started this practice after a mentor asked him, "Would you know a great day if you saw one?"

According to Womack, you should answer these questions:

  • When do you have the most focused energy during the day?
  • When are you most effective at doing specific hard to get done tasks?
  • When are you best at accomplishing goals that required broad thinking?

You can then divide the day into sections and match activities to daily zones, including tasks that need to get done today in order for your business to move forward; long-term strategic thoughts, conversations or meetings; and the mechanics of the day, such as email, travel and phone calls.

What does your ideal work day look like?

Read the full article at Entrepreneur.com

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