Spring Cleaning? Ditch your To-Do List! 3.1.22

It’s time for Spring Cleaning and there’s one thing you can get rid of for sure- it’s your “to do” list! That’s right, I’m suggesting you ditch the “to do” list! For years, I kept a one; And for years, I could never seem to be able to complete one! As soon as you check one item off, two more appear. What I learned is that to do lists make it too easy to live in fire-fighting mode, which can often be filled with the “urgent, not important” work. It feels productive, but yet it doesn’t produce meaningful results. I once worked for a Sales President, Michael Doyle, who would refer to this as what “looks like work.”

Moving my tasks off of a to do list and onto my calendar made a huge difference for me in my productivity, efficiency and results. It ensured the most important tasks were prioritized. Note that just as important is scheduling time for strategic work that falls in the “very important, not urgent” category. If you don’t, you’re likely to live in the “urgent,” whether or not it’s important. I draft off of Steve Covey’s time management quadrant philosophy to identify urgent and important work, delegate and kill the less important work, and then move the remaining priority items to calendar blocks. I’ve found this approach to be more efficient and effective. Don’t take my word for it; give it a try for a few weeks and see how more productive you’ll become!