I suspect I’m like many of you in that I always have a to-do list. Okay, sometimes I have multiple lists. And sometimes, I don’t know where they disappear to.
I listened to a webinar with Ron Friedman, who suggested such an obvious idea, I couldn’t believe I wasn’t already doing it. His suggestion? Make your to-do list more visible. He said too many of us write a to-do list early in the day and then we don’t look at it again.
A better approach, he said, “is to keep your to-do list on a brightly colored pad, so that your eyes are regularly drawn to it throughout the day.”
I took it a step further, and found a tiny clipboard with a pad of paper. Each sheet had 5 lines. The best part is it’s magnetic so I could hang it on a metal wall beside my desk. It’s highly visible and when I look away from my monitor, it’s the first thing I see.
I end my day checking my clipboard to see that I have accomplished what I needed to. If I haven’t, I know how I am starting my next day. It’s been a game changer.
He also suggested using a screen-saver that reminds you of your most important goals. He suggested the free Chrome extension Momentum.
His other suggestion was to make your alarm your executive assistant. “One reason high-profile executives are so effective is that they have someone reminding them when to stop doing one thing and start doing another,” Friedman said.
I find this approach particularly helpful at home. I set the timer on my microwave and that’s how long I have to clean or declutter. For me, it becomes a race against the clock, and I get a lot accomplished. When the timer goes off, I allow myself to relax and do something I want to do. On any given weekend, I might do this three to five times. I get much accomplished – including writing blog posts!
How do you improve your productivity?