Why should you consider writing to-do lists? After all, isn’t compiling a list just another chore to add to the many others you already have? It’s true that putting together a to-do list creates extra work in the short term, but in the long run, it’s time well spent because there are many benefits attached.
Reasons why using to-do lists is a good idea.
1. When life gets busy there’s less time to think, and you might find yourself working nonstop with no overall strategy, hoping everything will be done on time. Creating a to-do list helps you to identify and focus on your goals and to plan each day or week ahead; this helps to create order out of what might feel like chaos.
2. Compiling your list is more than a task identification exercise: it’s a chance to assign priorities. Each task can be categorized according to its urgency and importance. This enables you to work efficiently and effectively, getting the right jobs done at the right time.
3. A to-do list helps you to avoid the stressful overwhelm that can accompany large projects. Your lists naturally break down projects into smaller, more manageable tasks. You can then concentrate on working towards the next steps rather than fretting too much about the final objective that could be months ahead.
4. Once you’ve identified and written down your tasks you have a ready-to-hand reminder of what needs doing. You’re unlikely to forget to do something important.
5. You’re less likely to waste time if you use to-do lists. When time is short and deadlines loom, your list shows you what you should be doing next. If you do unexpectedly find yourself with the luxury of extra time you can see at a glance how to use it.
6. A to-do list provides a simple visual chart of your progress because you can tick off completed tasks. You’ll get a boost from knowing you’re being productive, and you’re more likely to take the breaks at work you need to stay alert and healthy. Knowing you’re on top of your workload allows you to relax in your downtime at home too.
Whether you use them at work or at home, when you’re busy, to-do lists help you to see the bigger picture, plan ahead, use your time more effectively and efficiently, and reduce your stress levels. Take control of your life: get into the habit of writing to-do lists today.