The 2009 To-Do List Format

A year ago made a post called “Evolution of The Daily To-Do List” and added on the 2009 formatting of my to-do list.

Here’s the section of update, although reading the original post is better to read. This update covers a simple trick I use to massively improve my productivity.

(updated 10-08-2009)

The 2008 formatting was very successful and I still use it till this day, however there was one problem: With so much work to do everyday, I’d get overwhelmed and scatter-brained about the work. Almost immediately I’d see tasks which I avoided doing or wanted to put off. This lead to many incomplete to-do lists, and postponing work till the next day, then next etc….

So one day I took a sheet of paper and covered the whole to-do list. I inched the paper down to reveal ONE task. I completed it. Then I inched down to reveal the next. Completed it.

Having a singular goal to work on helped imensely!

Towards the end of that day I inched down only to reveal I had completed every single task I assigned the day before! It was a great feeling to get through all the work in such a quick and easy manner. Since then I’ve been using this little trick to help me complete to-do lists, and it’s still working great.

Here’s a quick video documenting how I structure, complete and save my to-do lists:

At the end of every day I put each to-do list into a binder for future reference.

After doing this for several months, it’s nice to go back and look through them. If one month I didn’t progress much, I can clearly see why by looking at these daily performance reviews. I make notes of good days, bad days, workout regimens, interesting happenings etc.

Blog posted on: October 8, 2009

6 comments on “The 2009 To-Do List Format

  1. Aman@BullsBattleBears

    I agree Nev, the best method is to cover the list and only reveal one. That way wandering eyes don't convince the brain to knock off 'easy' tasks and leave you struggling to motivate yourself to do the hard ones all in succession.

  2. Oldbuddy

    Fortunately I have reached the point in my life where I have nowhere to go and all day to get there, so I would have little to put on a To-Do List and feel quite content to wander through my day doing what feels good at the moment with few regrets later on. However if you need a list, just make sure you don't end up with Paralysis by Analysis and accomplish less.


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