We all dread the countdown to the end of the day or week, or whatever time period is important to us, and an anxiety-inducing reality hits us that there is a strong likelihood a few things on our task lists will simply not get done.
But here is an easy way to avoid this moment of hypertension. Don’t do everything on your task list! It’s that simple.
Of course I am talking about the discretionary items on the list and not those handed down from your boss. But for most of us, we gather information as we go and plug in the to-do’s so that we do not forget the important things and let stuff fall through the cracks. But here’s the deal, when you are capturing a high volume of information that prompts one task after another, and deciding which need your attention and which do not, there is not always the time to reflect and use thoughtful judgment about whether or not the thing to be done actually should be done. So we just blindly, robotically put it on the list.
That’s okay. However at some point it is almost always a healthy, and time saving thing to review those tasks to identify the things that seemed to be of value at the time of their entry, but after further consideration, no longer seem so crucial.
And you need to do this often before you start in on something of little importance, taking critical time from the things of absolute importance. You don’t want to be at the end of your day and realize that you spent 3 hours working on something that should have been deleted, and that critical project handed to you by the boss is sitting there, demanding more time from you than you now have to give.
So there it is. How do you get it all done while reducing anxiety? Delete the stuff that never should have been there in the fist place. Why didn’t I discover this sooner?!