Forget Your To Do List! This Is How To Get Shit Done For Real!


Photo: Vermillia

I used to be that girl with a million things on her to-do list, and even though I ticked off most of them by the end of the day, it always felt like I wasn’t making a real change.

I could’ve done more and there were bigger things catching dust. One day I realized that by filling my to do list with endless chores, nothing would ever really change. I would be the same girl with the same life, only with a clean inbox and nicer cupboards. So I found myself a solution, and I’m happy to share my tools to help you get shit done for real!

1) Accept that you can only do so much, and you have to set priorities

You can’t change things overnight. So don’t pressure yourself with expectations you can never meet. You can still push yourself, just don’t punish yourself. Be kind and accept you can do a lot if you take your time! Read how pushing yourself too hard can lead to a burnout here.

2) Make a list of things you want to accomplish and a list of chores

The list of chores should be short. You don’t need to fix everything to a level of perfection (nobody cares if you vacuum your house enough), only write down priorities.

More interesting are the things you want to accomplish. Those can include working out more often, talking to your boss daily, following a new course and cooking healthy meals.

3) Write down your timetable 

This is where you find out how much time you have. Maybe you could be more efficient by planning healthy meals during your commute or realize you get nothing done because you spend those precious hours on Instagram.

How much time do you really have? Is what you’re expecting from yourself realistic? Check out the 7 time management hacks every 20 something should know to make the most of your hours.

4) Choose your priorities

Forget your chores list; those things will happen, because they have to. Instead, choose things you want to accomplish for yourself this month. What are the top priorities on your list and what does your schedule allow? Choose 2-5 and write them down.

5) Monitor those things daily for one month

Make a table in a notebook with the days of the month vertically (1-31) and the items you want to accomplish horizontally. Monitor daily weather or not you did each thing. You’ll see it gets easier every day if you only have those few priorities to focus on! They won’t take as much time as you think upfront, so you’ll end up with more time to do those nasty chores from your list! By the end of the month, you reevaluate your priorities. Some might be fixed while some will stay on your list for next month. But that’s ok! Change is a gradual process.

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  • Clementine

    I always struggle with my to do list, since i am not always as productive as I’d like to be. Thinking about priorities sure is a great way to succeed ! Thanks for the article :)

  • Debra Bros

    I have always found myself writing a to do list but always found myself feeling the same way about it. The idea of separating my chores from my priorities is totally mind-blowing but I can already see how much benefit that will have. Loved reading this post! and most of your others to be honest, always so helpful.

  • Camille Beygui

    Such a great and helpful post

  • dreamofadventures

    I have a few busy weeks ahead and these tips will come in hand =o) thanks for sharing!

  • Lee

    Thanks for this post. I’ve never managed to use lists. They always get overblown with mundane matters, swamping the things I really care about. Maybe I’m just bad at lists. But I love the idea of boiling it all down to two or three big things and seeing effort put into them over a month. I’m struggling with life right now. Big things need doing. I’ll try it – if it works, it’ll be a lifetime first for me. How cool would that be?

  • Matea

    Perfect tips! I love making lists but it took me some time to learn that writing an insane amount of things in there on a weekly basis isn’t gonna do any good for me :)

  • Alexis

    I used to make long lists but not anymore. Who has time for long anything anymore? Love #4…setting priorities really helps me crystallize what needs to be done in a timely manner. Great post!
    xx Alexis

    YouTube “Travel in style with Alexis”

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