Most people have goals in life. To lose weight. Make more money. Finish an important project. Improve a relationship. But we do not always make as much progress on our goals as we want to.
Most people also use lists in life. Checklists are familiar. A grocery list, a travel list, etc. And of course, we usually create at least one task list for the work we do.
A task list does not always lead to more productivity. In fact, a long list of tasks seems to lead us to accomplish more simple/easy/quick tasks. The harder tasks, often the ones that would help us reach our goals, are not accomplished. We may find ourselves checking off a lot of items but not making a lot of progress on our goals. Or, worse yet, we start pushing off the task list or eventually ignoring it altogether.
I have adopted a better way to use task lists to avoid procrastination. The process goes something like this:
I have utilized this philosophy for years. It absolutely works. At work, this strategy has helped us deliver award-winning projects. For my side hustle, it has allowed me to juggle multiple projects and stay on top of every client deadline. For my personal life, it has helped me continue growing in the areas that ultimately matter most. Whatever your goals, I can vouch for this offense-minded process.
Along the way I have implemented a few of my own tweaks to the process:
Questions to ask when creating your tasks:
No matter what the rest of the day holds, you can feel accomplished after completing at least one MIT each morning. And if you find yourself stuck in a rut later in the day, pull the list back out and see if you can tackle another MIT.
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