If I have a lot on my mind, I write what I call a dump. This includes a list of feelings thoughts and emotions that are consuming me that day. When I do this, if the feelings don’t help me or my productivity for the day, I symbolically leave the negative thoughts and feelings on that page. That’s not to say this always helps me not think about those doubts, but it sure minimizes there over all toll on my day.
I used to struggle with that too, but I eventually experimented enough to find what works for me. I currently make a quick to do list every morning right after breakfast. I use an app for this since I have my phone with me most of the time, making it easier to check the list during the day. Setting up reminders on your phone might be helpful to keep you on track during the day as well. Doing all of this only takes a minute, and you can even do it quickly before you get out of bed in the morning if you have your phone handy. You can also try planning your to do list the night before if you don't have time in the mornings. I would recommend experimenting with different things to see what works for you though. Best of luck to you!
The list doesn’t have to be long. I prefer bullet points of what I want to accomplish for the day. The most days I try to write a least 1-5 things.
I make my list first thing in the morning. I write out everything. I keep it in a small journal so I can keep it with me. I personally like to check things off of a list so when I complete a task I know is on the list I scratch it off and that gives me the opportunity to know what is left. I would be sure to reference it at least twice a day if you don’t have time to reference after every task. Once when you make it and once when you nearing the end of your day. It’s ok if it’s not all checked off and if it will take time to get used to a check list.
I wish I knew. I’d like an answer to that question as well. It seems to be last on my routine and I do it poorly. Any great suggestions from anyone else?
Sure. I’ve felt that way too, many times. I’ve gone weeks where I’m really busy or behind with work and I just jump into work directly without the list. When I do that, I end up feeding the belief that I’m powerless and I don’t have time to do things that are important to me, that I have to put other people’s priorities ahead of mine to be safe. That makes me less productive. I also miss doing important things because I don’t make the list and I become more reactive. To dos that are linked to my own long term goals don’t get done and many things for other people slip through the cracks. At the end of the day, I fee exhausted and often still feel like i didn’t get enough done. I certainly don’t feel like I made more progress by saving those 10 mins it would have taken to make my list. When I do the list consistently, things don’t fall through the cracks. I have a chance to put things on the list for me that would otherwise not be there. I feel better because I’ve done what I said I would do and it sets me up feeling like I have the power to control my day.
I do my list when eating my first meal of the day. I almost never need 10 minutes, any amount of time is good to jot down what I want to get done and any key events happening that day. I keep my lists in a notebook on the table so I never miss it when eating.