We all love to-do lists. Whether you prefer a note book, a scrap of paper, an app or a Word doc – it often feels like we have a never ending list of tasks.
Check out the tried and tested tips below from The Simplifiers team. These are tricks various members of our team use to boost our productivity and help us get through our to-do lists.
- 1. Time block
- 2. Don’t overload yourself
- 3. Use Trello
- 4. Celebrate all of the little wins
- 5. Practice prioritising
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1. Time block
Don’t just write a list. Allocate time for each item and schedule it in your google calendar. This will help keep you on track and make you more likely to complete all of your tasks. It also means you’ll easily be able to spot if you don’t have enough time for certain tasks – the calendar doesn’t lie.
2. Don’t overload yourself
Keeping one long list of never ending tasks and things you need to deal with is NOT going to boost your productivity.
Always have a list for only today’s to-dos that is separate from your bigger list of tasks which could cover a week, a month or even longer! Be realistic – you don’t want to be carrying over items to the next day on a regular basis.
If you complete all of today’s tasks, Great! Then you can go to your longer list and see what else you can work on or – and this is controversial – you could just take a break! Until then, stay focused and enjoy the satisfaction when you get to see a list at the end of the day with EVERYTHING crossed off.
3. Use Trello
The Simplifiers use Trello for a range of different things and find that it’s perfect for managing a more complex or longer term to-do list.
You can set it up in which ever way works for you but we have 1 board on which there are columns for each week.
Under each week we have a list of tasks that need to be completed which are colour coded and assigned to a member of the team. You can then click on each task to see additional notes, checklists and more.
On top of this we have columns for each team member so we all know what each person is working on.
Our current board runs from August 2017 to February 2018. It keeps us on track, we don’t have to worry about forgetting anything and everyone can see what needs to be done and by who in all areas of the business.
4. Celebrate all of the little wins
I know we just said you should keep your to-do list for today realistic and short but there is one kinda weird way in which adding to it can help boost your productivity.
If you’re feeling unproductive or need a bit of a boost, start to write down tasks you’ve completed that day that were not initially on your list. That might mean doing the laundry or an email you sent. Once you’ve written down all the little wins and achievements you’ve made, go back and cross them out.
It might sound silly but it makes you feel so good! You can see that even on your most unproductive days that you have achieved something. It gives you a positive feeling and builds the momentum you need to get through the other tasks on your list.
5. Practice prioritising
A lot of event planners have perfectionist tendencies and we can be pretty tough on ourselves by setting unrealistic expectations.
This can make it hard to know what to eliminate from our to-do lists when we’re super busy. We think we should achieve it all. One way around this is to separate your daily list into 2.
List 1: things you have to achieve today otherwise you will face negative consequences for yourself or your business.
List 2: Tasks you would like to complete but won’t really cause any damage if you don’t get to them.
Take list 2 and put it in a desk drawer. You only take it out if you find yourself with spare time and have completed your must do list. Like tip 2, this will help avoid overwhelm and make you feel like you have achieved your goals at the end of the day.