Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Why I Love Lists

I used to be something of a procrastinator--and I can still be--but I've found that lists help me rein in this tendency tremendously. I'm by no means an expert of productivity, but I've learned a lot from experience and from reading what the experts on productivity have to say.

Why I Love Lists:

Lists Free Up Your Mind 
I'm definitely one of those people who can lay awake for hours thinking about all the things I have to do tomorrow/this week/for the rest of my life and not sleeping. Then I wake up in the morning exhausted and can't remember any of the things I need to do.

Writing things down or typing them out gets them out of your head and into a safe place so that you don't have to worry about remembering them any more. You can sleep well knowing that in the morning, you have only to look at your list and figure out what to tackle first.

image via DIY Home Sweet Home

Lists Are Motivating
It's so easy to put off tasks--especially the really unpleasant ones like making a doctor's appointment or re-caulking the shower. Writing something down and seeing it in black and white makes it so much harder to procrastinate. It also puts things in perspective--making a doctor's appointment becomes just one more item on the list instead of an insurmountable obstacle. (Tell me I'm not the only person who feels this way about calling the doctor, lol.)

image via SamOsborneStore on etsy

Lists Create Organization
I may not be the most organized person in the world, but I do stay on top of things for the most part and I credit a lot of this to list-making.

Grocery lists help you remember to buy what you really need without buying lots of unnecessary items on a whim; to-do lists help you to focus on getting the most important tasks done each day rather than wasting precious time on non-essentials; packing lists help you avoid forgetting anything important when you're going on a trip; project lists help you to see clearly the smaller steps toward getting a larger task done.

image via The Creativity Exchange

Lists Give You a Great Sense of Accomplishment
There's nothing better than crossing off the last item on a to-do list--or even the first item. It feels good to know you've accomplished something and tangibly seeing an task crossed off reinforces this positive feeling. This creates momentum and can really help you get things done, often more things that you thought you had time for.

image via 997thepoint.com

I'm sure you can see why I love making lists! They can really help you to be more efficient, feel less anxious, and avoid forgetting to do important things. If you struggle with procrastination, feel like you need to be more organized or find that you're lying awake at night worrying about all the things you have to get done, why not try list-making and see if it helps?

Are you a list-maker? Do you find lists help you to be more productive? Any list-making tips you can share?

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