I spend a lot of time talking about my task list, but there’s another list I value more, my done list.
Why? I primarily work on large projects and it’s often many days (if not weeks) before they are completed. A list that shows progress helps to provide motivation and keep me on track. I also refer to these lists during all of my review and planning sessions.
On paper, they’re the items that are highlighted each day. Many years ago I learned that highlighting the completed items made the un-highlighted tasks pop more on the page. For my electronic list, each day I automatically create a new text file for the completed items that I can easily search and run simple analysis on. I also wrote a quick program that shows me how many items I’ve completed that day or week and how many items are left on the task list. If you are looking for a ready made solution idonethis may be worth looking into (note: I have not used this application.)
Many of the items on my done list are small reoccurring tasks. By working on these little things that need to be done, I gather momentum and can move forward on tasks that otherwise can feel insurmountable.
Daily planning is an item on my task list, as part of my morning routine it’s quite easy to check off and let me celebrate that even if it’s a Monday, I’ve gotten something done! Even with just one task crossed off, it makes it easier to start working on the next task and the one after that.
Still not convinced about the value of a list of all you’ve accomplished each day? Please check out the following links:
- The Art of the Done List: Harnessing the Power of Progress
- Ten Clever Uses for Plain Text Files That Can Increase Your Productivity
- The Physics of Productivity: Newton’s Laws of Getting Stuff Done
- Are you a knitter? Jill Wolcott Knits has great worksheets to help your knitting projects celebrate the done.