To do lists

So, I am taking the 30 Push challenge put out by Chalene Johnson*, (she’s the gal who does Turbofire, Turbo jam and a whole slew of others) which is a 30 day organize and achieve your goals program. This woman is crazy busy and crazy organized. She teaches a little bit day by day how to create and maintain a to do list.

The reason I bring this up is because far too often I find myself running in circles trying to figure out what the heck I am supposed to be doing next. Sometimes I remember, more often I forget and that’s how I burn food, lose glasses of milk, misplace important papers, forget about laundry loads in the washer and so on.

And I know I am not the only one.

Sometimes my writing is inhibited by the nagging feeling that I’m forgetting something. That there’s something I HAVE to do, but I just can’t remember what it was.

By keeping a to-do list, on my smartphone no less, I am finding I am getting things done and when I think of something I need to do I take a moment, put it on the list in the right catagory (today, this week or SOOOOOON) and things are getting done! If I feel like I’m forgetting something, I check my phone (I have a widget on the home screen that lists off tasks that haven’t been done) and can get reminded…oh yeah, I need to switch out laundry and get another load in. Oh yeah I need to get dinner on, oh yeah I need to call the dr office about X’s appoint and so on.

We actually remembered an appointment today that I would have totally missed if I hadn’t entered it into my phone.

Starting tomorrow I’m going to add a daily wordcount to the list. Next week, editing. Part of being a writer, part of being a writer in the business of writing and selling his/her own books, is being able to keep track of your business. Which means getting a grasp on organizational skills.

There are many methods out there, some focus on housecleaning, such as Flylady or  Unfuck Your Habitat, and I do believe there are a couple others who focus more on other organizing time but I can’t remember what those are. If you know of one, please list it in the comments. These are ways that have worked for many people in getting their lives, all areas of their lives, in order, so they can keep from wasting time and running in circles and do things they want to do, like hobbies, spending time with important people/pets that share our lives & so on.

Often times we are so caught up in trying to get shit done, that we forget to take a moment to sit back, breathe, think through, and then write out what we need to do. Whether it’s writing or any other aspect of our lives. I firmly believe that sitting down for about 15 min every day and figuring out what needs to get done, how important those tasks are to the overall goals and priorities I have, how soon those things need to get done, will go a long way in moving my life more in the direction I want to go. I also believe that this sort of thing can help other people in achieving their goals and be more productive in their lives.

I have a long way to go, I’ve got areas of things that I’ve neglected/forgotten about that I absolutely MUST get under control and soon. But I’ve got this to-do list, it’s on my phone which I’m constantly checking anyways… and I’m starting to get a handle on those things.

What methods help YOU keep yourself on track? Or are you one of those awesome folks who manage to just do it naturally?

*you can still sign up, and do it. It’s free and is, for me, a great set of skills.
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