The best way to increase your productivity and monitor your time management skills is to maintain a daily To-Do List. This simple practice will also help you stay more organized, more focused, and less stressed as you progress through your day.
One of the aspects that I find most interesting about maintaining a To-Do List is how readily people underrate its advantages. The average person is unaware of the fact that the disorganization we often feel in our lives is nothing more than the result of mental clutter, which we can at least begin to tackle with a pen, a pad, and consistency. Consequently, the To-Do List that is sustained is not a waste of time, but rather a means of taking control of your time.
Another aspect of the To-Do List that interests me is the seemingly endless number of ways in which you can personalize this list to fit your own needs. For instance, I utilize a To-Do List both personally and professionally, although you may only want to use your list for personal reasons. Or maybe only professionally. It is up to the individual.
Furthermore, I prefer to create my To-Do List the night before. I like the feeling of ending my day with some type of written preparation for the next day. On some rare occasions when I have not felt like creating the list the night before, I would write it out the next morning first thing. But this approach usually made me feel hurried and anxious, which inevitably hindered my productivity, so this method does not work well for me. However, you may find that making your list when you first wake up, as opposed to the night before, is the right match for you, or after you’ve had your first cup of coffee in the morning, or even after you’ve dressed and had breakfast. Everyone has to find what works for them.
This means the perfect To-Do List for you is not one that has to look like mine or anyone else’s in order to be constructive. The perfect To-Do List for you is one that you customize to meet your own unique goals and objectives. Your To-Do List can be as long or as short as you want it to be. It can be color-coded for certain events or deadlines. Your lists can be written out on sticky notes, logged in a notebook, or kept digitally. You can be as creative with your list as you would like to be. Or you can make it as trouble-free as possible. It is always completely up to you.
The only requirement for increasing your productivity by means of a To-Do List is that you make your list everyday and that you work from it everyday.