Making a daily to do list helps you stay organized and on track. You feel a sigh of relief when you can get everything out of your head and down on paper. Your mind stops stressing about trying to remember everything. But, if you’re just taking action on the simple, easy tasks that you’ve written down, you might not be making much progress towards achieving your goals. Here is how to use a to do list to achieve your goals.
First, write down everything you need to do in order to achieve your goal. Make an exhaustive list. You probably won’t have everything you need written down because the path to achieving your goals often changes. Make your list based off of what you know and can think of right now. Don’t edit your list, just create a list of tasks that you think need to be accomplished. Include things to research, items to buy, tasks to complete, maybe you need to ask for help, etc. Then, go through your list and break these tasks down into smaller pieces that will take you less than 15 minutes to finish.
Next, choose one thing off your extensive list to get started with. You might be wondering where to begin but you just have to get started. As Rumi says, when you walk on the way, the way appears. So, just get started. Pick one thing off your list and start there. You can pivot and make adjustments as you go. Most likely, you’ll need to add additional tasks to your list. Because, as you start doing the work, you’ll realize that you didn’t think of a few things. That’s completely normal and perfectly okay. Remember, achieving your goal is not a straight line. There will be twists and turns. But, the key is to just get started!
Lastly, continue to complete at least one task off your to do list each day and schedule it into your planner. If possible, schedule this task first thing in the morning. You don’t want to get to the end of the day without completing your task. Don’t leave it to chance. Schedule it into your planner so that you’ll get it done! Make this task a non negotiable. Even when you don’t feel like it, push yourself to complete the task anyway. Remind yourself how you’ll feel when you’re done. You’ll often realize it’s not as bad as you thought. The tough part is just getting started. Then, you have the rest of the day to complete the other tasks on your to do list that aren’t directly associated with achieving your goals. Such as, errands, housework, appointments, etc. This way, you’ll feel accomplished at the end of the day, knowing that you actually made progress towards achieving your goals.
If you feel like you’re crossing things off your to do list but you’re not moving the needle towards achieving your goals, then use these three steps to help you. First, create an exhaustive list of everything related to achieving your goal. Next, choose one thing off your list and just get started. Don’t spend too much time overthinking about it. Just get started! Lastly, schedule the task into your planner first thing in the morning so that you’ll ensure your task gets completed. The worst thing is finishing the day and not completing your task. Preload your day with the task that will matter the most; the one that will move you closer to achieving your goals! This is how you use a to do list to achieve your goals.