It’s good to have a master list, kept in one place, of all the things we can choose to work on. But sometimes a shorter-term list can come in handy too.
I like to play around with lists for specific purposes which are usually completed soon after and then tossed. These can include:
- A plan for how to handle a particularly busy day.
- A list of quick tasks I want to do at a specific time (such as when I get home from work: get book for friend, phone Mum, put new lip balm in bag).
- Things to take with me to an appointment or on a short trip.
- A list of things circulating in my mind that I want to think more about or work on in the next day or so (help my daughter with her recorder practice, count number of clothes in wardrobe, look up dessert recipe).
When I wrote about the value of an evening list in designing evenings we enjoy, Jane T commented on her fabulous variation of this idea—thanks Jane!
Well, I've expanded this concept to include an Afternoon List. Once the children come home from school, I'm busy with them, dinner, helping with homework, folding washing and the like. I'm also vaguely aware that I have other things to do, but I often can't think of what those things are at the time. It's not until bed time that I remember. So I've begun to write a list in the hour before I collect the children from school. The list consists of 2-6 chores that I can squeeze in between my main responsibilities. I don't necessarily accomplish everything on the list, but this has really helped me to be more productive.
What short-term lists make your life easier?