September Shorts: How I Structure My To Do List

When I have things to do for the week (or, in a particularly busy time, for the day) I divide them into 4 categories:

1) Create

Do I have to make this thing? Do I have to write, plan, assemble this thing? Does it require a lot of output of brain energy to do this? Then it goes on my create list.  Things on my create list generally need to be allotted 1 hour or more of my time, uninterrupted.

2) Consume

What  am I consuming? What is on my list that requires me to take in new information? What informs what I’m creating right now? These things go on my consume list, and can be caught up on in the margins of my day; 15 minutes here and there.

3) Communication

Who do I need to talk to/contact/thank? Who should I be checking in with about that thing? Are there any meetings I should take? Again, this can be done on the fly (in 5-15 minutes), but if I have a particularly long list of communication to dos, then I often wrangle all of those into a larger chunk of time, usually before 7AM.

4) Care

Grocery shopping, doctor’s appointments, scheduling repairs, cleaning bathrooms. Must get done, might be time consuming, but require little thought? Then it’s on my care list.

Would this differentiation of your to do list work for you?

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