The Value of a To Do List & Why You Need to Have One 

The Value of a To Do List & Why You Need to Have One 

Building on my previous post in which I talked about scheduling, today I want to discuss the value of a to do list.

Previously, I laid out how I build a business, and write the process down. Writing everything I wanted to achieve, and letting this form into stages. Then breaking them into to do lists. At each stage, there are certain things I want to achieve: my core objectives. And each core objective has a to do list I need to complete in order to achieve the objective.

Scheduling is one of the most fundamental building blocks of any pursuit. Whether it be performance athletics or performance entrepreneurial pursuits – having a schedule is key. So if you haven’t read my process, go back and have a look. Especially if you don’t plan!

a picture of a to do list, with letters from scrabble and a post-it note, highlighting the value of a to do list in business

 

How

Having a to do list is part of scheduling. Scheduling and having things planned out strengthens your productivity and takes the stress off bigger more insurmountable tasks. Because you know what you have to complete in smaller, everyday tasks – in order to get to the big one.

There are lots of different ways to compile a to do list. Whether it be your Notes app in your phone or carrying a physical notebook with you. All it is essentially, is having space where anything that is floating around in your head can be jotted down. It’s like having an external hard drive for your memory. If you write it down – you can forget about it.

 

The Cost of Forgetfulness

image of a man walking in the street looking into his bag, realising he has forgotten something - showing the value of a to do list in not forgetting things in business

Having thoughts occupying your brain space is taxing and as a result, draining. And often if you’re stressed by a million different thoughts, you will forget things if you don’t write them down. It’s stressful and can be damaging to relationships if you’re not keeping up with your end of an agreement. Which can also affect your self-esteem. And this kind of stress is something that is avoidable. So if you can solve a problem – solve it.

And your brain actually loves it. That’s why you get a sigh of relief once you’ve written everything down.

 

Ease of Access

image of a business man sitting on a wall with a take-away coffee beside him, on his smart phone. when making your to do list, it can be easier to do so digitallyI find writing things down digitally is particularly handy as it syncs everything from my phone to my computer. It has everything I need all in one place, whenever I need it. Having your list to hand at all times means you’re reassured that you’re not going to let anyone down or forget anything.

 

The Value of Reliability

talking about the value of a to do list in becoming a reliable source in business as an entrepreneur - an image of a woman conducting a casual business meeting with someone else

What’s great is that because there are so many people who are forgetful and unreliable – this increases your value in business. In a world that has become accustomed to flakiness, you become a reliable source and gain a reputation for being so. This gives you value over others as it becomes an asset that sets you apart.

 

The Benefits

a close up of an egg timer - representing timeline and consistency. time pressure in business and being reliable by having a business plan and personal structure

When you have a to do list to refer to, you become productive at a consistent rate because you know what you’re doing. Which means you can also relax. Which is important as an entrepreneur. It’s not uncommon for entrepreneurs to burn themselves out. So if you can take any stress off your plate, it’s worth it for the energy you’ll save in the long run.

A lot of those who have a tendency to push themselves in work and life find it hard to relax. Because there is always something they ‘feel’ they should be doing.

So if you’re writing down all your to-dos, you know when you’ve completed them, and know what you need to complete next. You can recognise when you’ve completed enough or all of your tasks on your list – and switch off for the evening, day, or weekend. Without the guilt.

 

The Takeaway

image of a man relaxing in a hammock under the sunset - the benefits of being organised means you can enjoy the moments of relaxation when you know you've done everything you need to do Even for that reason alone, I find it worth having. The element of relaxation and switching off. There’s nothing worse than having fifteen different things flying around your head, and putting them on paper, is like plucking them from your brain and onto the page instead.

It’s a key building block for those who have a proactive life-style. And when I work with clients, it’s one of the integral skills I really impress on people, particularly at the beginning because it’s so important.

The benefits always prove themselves. And I see time and time again the value of planning the every day and the importance of having a list in which you can tick off – and then switch off.

How do you go about organising your tasks? If you’ve any feedback or questions from what I’ve said, don’t hesitate to reach out to me.

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Or if you’re interested in my upcoming event to kick off 2021 – Fresh Resolutions, tickets are available here.