be more productive
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Be More Productive: Stop Writing To-Do Lists

Want to be more productive? Stop making lists that make you feel bad.

Have you ever written a to-do list and at the end of the day discovered that you checked off maybe one thing on the list? You were busy all day, but you didn’t seem to achieve anything that you set out to do. Talk about a knock to your self esteem, am I right? That’s why I’ve declared no more to-do lists! Insead, try doing I-did lists.

How to Start an I-Did List

A to-do list is basically a list of things you need to do, right? Well, an i-did list is the opposite. It’s writing down things that you’ve accomplished as you do them. All you need is one task to get the ball rolling. Then, throughout the day, keep writing down tasks you’ve completed.

For example, here’s my I-did list for today, so far:

  • Answered emails
  • Cleared out old emails
  • Did my social media posts
  • Updated my SEO strategy (Thanks Kate Toon!)
  • Posted an article to alinabradford.com
  • Edited a client article
  • Wrote an article for alinabradford.com
  • Posted a high-paying job to the No-fluff Facebook Group
  • Helped my daughter send off a letter to her cardswap buddy
  • Checked business stats
  • Gathered up the recycling
  • Found my portable keyboard
  • Cleaned up the office floor
  • Caught up with my Mom
  • Tidied up the bathroom
  • Put away some laundry

Now, if I hadn’t made my I-did list, I would probably look back on this day and think of all the things I didn’t do (like work on my new book) and feel like a lazy twit. Just one look at my list, though, tells me that I did a lot of things and was far from lazy.

The Beauty of the I-Did List

By making a list of things you already did, you can actually see that you’re making progress in life. Not only does that boost your self esteem, it also triggers your memory. While you’re writing down things you did, you’ll think of other things to do. As you think of the things, do them, write them down and move onto the next thing. You’ll be more productive and you’ll end up coming up with some creative ideas to solve problems you’re handling, just because you don’t feel pressured.

Trust me. It’s like magic.

I challenge you to make an I-did list everyday for the next three days. Tell me how it went in the comments!

I've been a DIY, lifestyle, tech and health writer for two decades. Dang, that makes me sound old...Anywhoo, feel free to follow me on Twitter. I'm @alinabradford. Real original handle, huh?

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