I want to share some little known to-do list strategies with you today, as alternative to planning your days and important tasks…because sometimes the classic laundry list of to-do’s just doesn’t work. 🤣
Passive vs. active to-do lists
Do you ever notice that some days (or weeks or months) will go by and you haven’t touched that big project you keep meaning to get to? That super important to-do is still sittin’ on the shelf. 🙄
Taking action on it might feel uncomfortable or scary or overwhelming. Or all of the above.
Maybe by the time you get to it you’re just too tired and decide to wait for another day. It can just feel so good to start with the other easy peasy stuff first anyway – the stuff you know how to do and can get done quickly.
But then, whoops, where did the day go, it just flew by! 🌬️
Here’s something you can try to make sure your time is balanced between those more challenging to-do’s and the easy stuff: create an “active” to-do list and a “passive” to-do list.
📝 List #1 = action list
This list is for those things that you tend to put off or shy away from. They keep getting pushed to another day, carried over from list to list, just sittin’ on that shelf of yours.
Start your day with this “action list” because this is when you’re most likely to have the most energy and motivation.
📝 List #2 = passive list
These to-do’s are so easy for you to do, you know how to get done and tend to start with them first. You can do them even when you’re low on energy because they’re so fun, simple and/or quick.
Leave this “passive list” for later in the day, for a time you’re low on energy or only get started on it once you’ve dedicated time to your “action list.”
Having the lists split up like this helps to make sure you’re dividing your time evenly between the “action” items and the “passive” items. The action items don’t get buried on a longer list and they stay top of mind. 🙌
Rather than add to your to-do list, delete something
How many things are on your list this week? 🤔 Be honest, it’s a pretty long list right? 📝
I get it – if I showed you my entire list of things I want to get done this week it’s way more than can fit on one page LOL.
But you’ve got to be realistic about how much time and energy you have to actually work on all this stuff: we often over estimate how much we can get done in the short-term and under estimate how much we can get done in the long-term.
That short-term overestimation often leaves us feeling frustrated and unaccomplished (when we can’t get everything on that list done). And it’s OK to not get #allthethings done in one day or one week or one whatever.
So here’ what to do instead: delete just 1x thing off of your to-do list this week (or if you’re feeling spicy, delete more than 1x thing!)
It might feel tough to take that thing off (for now), but it’ll feel so good when you see how much other stuff you’re able to get done. 😉
1st of the month to-do list
This is probably one of the best time saving things I’ve ever implemented for myself: creating a list of all those little (but important) admin and biz tracking activities that you need to do on a regular basis and make it a point to do them on the 1st of each month.
When I started doing this I saved so much time and was able to stay so much more focused. No longer did I have to break my flow or interrupt an important thing I was working on just because I happened to randomly remember “Ack! I haven’t checked/updated/looked at that in awhile, I better do it now before I forget again.” 🤦
And I’m more at ease the rest of the month knowing all that stuff is taken care of and that it’ll be taken care of again next month. The fear of forgetting (or FOF, an acronym I’ve just made up) is released! 😇
So start to keep a running list of those tasks you’re doing again and again and again, set aside an hour (or two) to plow through them all when the first of the month comes around and voilà it’s all done.
Here’s a few things on my own “New Month Check List” to get you started with ideas for your own:
✅ Backup my computer files on hard drive.
✅ Pay my affiliate partners (ideally this should be automated, I’m just not there yet.)
✅ Check that I’ve received my own payouts from various affiliates and platforms (just to be sure nothing was accidentally missed…it’s happened before!)
✅ Update my TidyCal availability (I actually do my best to update this as soon as I’ve got time I want to block off, but I never fail to find blocks of time I missed 😝)
✅ Tally up and review my monthly income, expenses and cashflow overall.
✅ Clear my Siteground cache (because OMG I’ve been told so many times by techy-smart people to just do this so I do it.)
✅ Backup my email list (because I don’t want to lose all those wonderful souls to a tech glitch…as you can see I’m really paranoid about tech stuff 😂)
✅ Download monthly calendar wallpapers for my computer
Are you inspired to start a new type of alternative to-do list now? Either way, share below about your thoughts! 👇