By: Becky Esker, President, Get Organized! LLC
Do you have days
that you never seem to get anything accomplished? Many times,
this happens as a result of poor planning and failure to
maintain focus. Establishing systems is a key component to
organization. A system for planning our to-do’s is critical.
utilizing a two-list system. This system comes in handy
especially on those days we are bombarded with things from all
The two-list system includes 1) a master
list; 2) a daily list.
For the master list, I suggest a spiral
notebook or steno notebook. Something that is bound together and
doesn’t separate easily will do perfect. It is critical the
pages stay together. The purpose of the master list is two-fold.
One, it will eliminate all those sticky notes and scratch paper
that get lost and misplaced. And two, it will allow you to have
a place to “store” all those thoughts you have swimming in your
head. In other words, it’s a dumping ground for the over flow of
information in our heads!
On the master list, list each and every
item or task that you have to-do. Do not worry about
priority…just write it down. Your master list will be your
“safety net” to make sure things do not fall through the cracks.
You could have 20-30 tasks or more on your initial master list.
It is critical you know the whereabouts of
your master list at all times. It needs to be accessible so you
can add to it each and every time you think of something that
needs to be done.
Each day, review your master list and make
your daily to-do list. I recommend this be accomplished at the
end of each day, unless you are a morning person and prefer to
do this early in the morning the day of. In either case, peruse
your master list and come up with 6-10 manageable items to do
that day. Keep your daily list accessible and as you complete an
item be sure to cross it off the list. At the end of the day,
carry any un-done tasks to the next day’s daily list. Review
your master list, once again taking care to cross off the items
completed and copy items to-do the next day to your daily to-do
list. Continue to repeat this process daily. After 21 times or
so, it will become habit. Just hang in there for a more