The to-do list is a strange paradox. It compels you to get stuff done yet it can also make you feel inadequate for leaving boxes unchecked.
“We like lists because we don’t want to die,” said Umberto Eco.
Perhaps instead of trying to do everything you pick one thing to execute.
Called the Hunter Strategy, it asks you to surround yourself with a simple Post-it note to get stuff done.
All you do is choose one task that is going to be the focus of your day, even if it doesn’t take you the whole day to complete. You write that item down on a Post-it note, stick it to your laptop (or a wall, we presume) and use it as your lodestar. Look to the note when your mind begins to wander to your waiting text messages, to your dry-cleaning, or to any of the ridiculous things people do when they should be working.
How do you know which task to start with?
According to the CEO of Jotform Aytekin Tank, “If you’re having trouble thinking of something I’ll give you a hint — it’s usually the thing you least want to do.” That thing is probably the activity we reserve for the end of the day, other than brushing our teeth.
There’s no need to throw our phone into the ocean just yet. But if we‘re using the mobile as a way to procrastinate, perhaps we should consider it.
PS. Also consider giving the Pomodoro Technique a shot.