How to get everything done in your day? That is a question you may ask yourself often.
Does the idea of completing your “to do” list every day sound impossible? For many people, their “to do” list is so long they need a legal pad to make their list. The result is a never ending list and missing that feeling of accomplishment. Instead, with a few quick tips, you can end your day feeling satisfaction, and like you’ve accomplished something. Here’s how:
Step #1 Make a List
If you haven’t created a habit of making a daily, weekly, and monthly “to do” list it’s time to embrace the habit. This system of organization helps you track everything you need to accomplish. It ensures you stay productive and efficient. And let’s face it, it’s much better than starting your day with a head scratch as you try to figure out what you need to focus on first. I always like to make my list at the end of my work day for the next day, so I can start my day focused, and know right away what I need to work on. Of course you need to stay flexible because things are always changing. Do whatever works best for you, if it’s paper that if fine. If you’d rather use an app on your phone, tablet or computer that is great too. If you don’t use what works best for you, you probably won’t stick with it.
Step #2 Prioritize
Now, taking a look at that list you made for your daily, weekly, and monthly tasks, rank them in order of priority. What are the most important tasks for your business? What tasks can you, and only you, accomplish? What tasks will help you grow your business, make money, and thrive?
Step #3 Eliminate
Now this may sound dramatic but it’s important. Chances are there are items on your task list that just don’t belong there. Either they can be:
Accomplished by someone else – Outsource or delegate tasks that take too much time, don’t fit into your schedule, and don’t directly affect your income.
Automated – Embrace technology! There are so many tasks that can be automated. For example, bill paying. You can automate your bill paying and save yourself hours each month.
Delayed – How many of the tasks on your list really need to be done right now? For example, you might have errands and chores on that list. Chances are they can be saved for the evening hours or for the weekend. Or you might be able to buddy up with someone and swap errands. They go to the office supply store and buy items for the both of you and you head to the post office and handle the shipping for the both of you.
Flat out eliminated – How many tasks on your list can simply be eliminated? Chances are there are at least a few. If you struggle with this, try letting go of one task. Just get rid of it and see what happens.
To stay focused I have a kitchen timer that has become one of my best friends in my office. Set it for an hour after closing down social media and email, turn off the ringer on the phone and just work without any interruptions. I also diffuse essential oils in office which also has helped me stay more focused while I work. If you are easily distracted and lose focus find the things that work for you. For me it’s starting my day with the list, my timer, and my oils.
Finally, as you take a look at your shorter daily task list it’s important to keep the items in order of priority. Focus on the most important, and profitable, tasks first. Then focus on the lesser tasks once you’re finished. You’ll find that your days are much more productive. You’ll finally get to enjoy the feeling of throwing away that daily task list with a sense of satisfaction.