What if my job for a week was to list all the things I have done each day rather than writing to-do lists each evening for the following day?
I am a great to-do list writer and I have to admit that I do get a certain satisfaction from crossing things off on the list, and yes on occasion I add things to the list that I have doneso I can cross them off and feel smug. But more often than not I find that I never actually finish one list and I end up transferring the last few things from that list to the next ‘new’ list.
So here’s my idea.
Instead of constantly reminding myself of all the things I still need/have to do, I focus on what I have done. I don’t write anything on the list until I have done it (yes I have already admitted that I have been cheating with the to-do list and doing this occasionally anyway. So for now the rule is doing to be that I record everything on my list once I have done it. My idea is that I have to try and capture as much as possible of how I have spent my day, to give myself recognition for what I have achieved. I am hoping that what I’ll find is that I do a lot more each day than I give myself credit for.
It may not help with my memory so perhaps I’ll need to employ a few post-it notes to remind me of things that need doing but rather than giving myself a list I can just jot a quick reminder down.
Let us give it a go and see. Today, in my usual mind-set, would probably be one of those days when I haven’t really achieved anything and it has turned out to be a bonus day because the plans I had were cancelled. This would usually become a bit of a failure day, as a bonus day with all that extra time I should (note the use of the word ‘should’) have made really good use of it, got on with things on the to do list, got ahead of myself for next week but it has not really turned out like that.
I could beat myself up about a missed opportunity or I can decide to recognise the things I have done. This is what I have done ….
- Collect from football training
- Cook roast dinner
- Walk the dog
- Catch up on podcast listening
- File worksheets
- Wash up
- Cook dinner