Keep on top of things

To-do lists are basically the grown-up version of revision timetables; no matter how pretty they look, if you approach them with little thought or practicality, chances are you won’t stick to them. 

Here are a few dos and don’ts on creating and maintaining fail-proof action lists. An overwhelming sense of productivity (and a dash of smugness) guaranteed. 

Before reading further, brainstorm everything you have to do in the coming months and create a masterlist. Now break the list into weekly to-do lists…

Do take the rest of your life into consideration
Include daily stuff like showering or taking the dog for a walk, and be honest about how you’re like to feel on certain days. Don’t list twenty jobs for Sunday when you know you’ll be hungover post-Saturday night partying.

Do select your top three tasks
If you’ve got five tasks booked in for Monday, mark three of them as ‘priority’ (maybe with a nice sticker!) – they could be tasks that will save you money or make money or maybe impact significantly on the completion of future tasks. Complete these tasks first. A few other tasks left stranded? Return them to the masterlist.

Don’t scrimp on details and include timings
Don’t just scribble ‘write report’, it will mislead your mind into thinking it’s a done-and-dusted-in-ten-minutes situation when, in reality, it involves hours of research, three phone calls etc. Break it down and include approximate timings… and try and stick to them!

Don’t be a hero
A list featuring one hundred tasks will make you feel amazing (as you write it) but, we’re sorry to tell you, it’s doomed to fail. You know you better than anyone, so be realistic. Equally, don’t be heroic and push yourself to ridiculous limits. Consider leaving one day free for 100% relaxation or fun.

Do show it off
Pin it where you are constantly reminded of it or share with a friend (who can shame you when you complete only 1% of your weekly list).

Don’t abandon it
Failed in your first week? Don’t panic. Return what’s left over to your masterlist and begin the process again.

Do keep your energy levels up
As you’re busy killing your to-do list, reach for a tasty and nutritious top-up, such as Nurishment Original. This creamy drink contains more than 80% RDI vitamins and minerals and 20g of protein per 400g retro-style ring-pull can. Drinkable energy and inspiration!