I have posted before about the importance of keeping and using a To Do List! Now we are going to get into the details and look at different systems you can consider when beginning to use a To Do List.
Before we dig into the different options for To Do Lists, let me start by saying that I have used all of these options in the past. Feel free to try one “system” for a while and if it doesn’t work, then try another. You may find that one system works best during specific seasons of your life. That’s ok! Be willing to adjust and change as needed to fit the needs of you and your family.
Ok, now that that’s understood, let’s look at some different To Do List systems to consider.
To Do List – Systems to Consider
_____ #1 – Notebook | Paper | Index Card – If you are one that prefers paper and pen, this having a physical To Do List may be for you. The important thing to keep in mind is that you will be tempted to keep all sorts of paper To Do Lists all over the place. If you are going to keep a physical To Do List, be sure to keep it organized and in one place.
You will probably want to have a Master To Do List where you keep a running list of tasks or projects that you want to eventually get done. Then you want to have a daily To Do List that keeps you on task for that day. So decide on where you will keep these lists and stick to it! Make a habit of going to your lists daily to update them and jot down any more tasks you think of that need to be done.
_____ #2 – To Do App – There are many great apps you can use on your phone or computer that will help you keep a running to do list. A few I recommend are the ToDoIst, Remember the Milk, and Wunderlist apps (links below). I have checked out all three of these and any of them would work great to get you started. They all have free versions you can use that will be more than sufficient to meet your needs. The benefit of using an app like this (vs. a paper version) is that your to do list will be with you wherever you are.
_____ #3 – Google Calendar – If you use Google Calendar for your calendar, you may want to think about just using Google Calendar for your to do list as well. This is what I have ended up doing, simply because I didn’t like having to open up a separate app to see my to do list. I created a separate calendar for my to do list, and then created “all day” events for my to do items. Some things on my to do list are recurring items (like laundry, cleaning reminders, backing up the computer, etc.), and it is so simple to set up that way in Google Calendar. Each week when I do my weekly review and look at the coming week, I simply open up Google Calendar and I can not only see all my appointments and schedule for the week, but also my to do list!
_____ #4 – Combination – Some may find that a combination works the best for them. You may like to keep your To Do List in a notebook, and then add them to your calendar when you plan your week. Or you may like to keep your To Do List in an app or in Google Calendar, and then write out your list for the week on paper and put on the frig. You just have to find what works for you and stick to it!
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Choose one of the options above and then begin keeping a To Do List. When choosing, keep in mind how you work best. Do you like to write things down and have a physical to do list or do you like having an app on your phone?
No one way is better than the other. The only right way to keep your To Do List is the way that allows you to actual use it!
I hope this encourages you to begin using a To Do List today. You will be amazed at how it will help you stay focused so you can accomplish so much more each day!