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When Your "To Do" List Isn't a To Do List and How to Fix It!

You sat, you wrote, but you haven't seemed to check anything off of the list. It's time to dissect what a To Do List is and get to the bottom of getting things done!

1. It's a List, But It's Not To Do's

You took the time to sit and think about things you want to get done, things needed to grow your business, etc. You've made a few headers: Finances, Business Tracking, Social Media, etc. Your Social Media list looks like this (for example):

Social Media





This is NOT a To Do List. You've identified platforms that need work and that's about it. There are no items to check off or way to gauge your productivity. These types of lists are important, but they have a different purpose (more on that later).

2. Use ACTION words!

So we've determined the list itself needs some work. How? Begin with bite size actions. Let's take "Facebook" from your Social Media List. We will create a new To Do List for "Facebook". Let's focus on scheduling content for Facebook. Your To Do List may look like this:


Research relevant articles and copy links

Add commentary to article link as part of post and schedule post

Select images/photos to post throughout the week

Create captions for image and schedule post

Notice anything different about this list? It's MUCH more specific and there are ACTION words. Actual directives that will result in productivity that can be measured. I could get some things done with this list, could you? If the answer is no, get even more specific and breakdown the tasks into smaller pieces. Here is an example of the same list but broken down even more:


Google relevant words and search news

Copy links to email draft

Post Links to Facebook and add commentary, schedule posts

Search recent pics and favorite biz page friendly pics

Write captions in email draft

Add photo and caption to Facebook, schedule post

*NOTE-TAKING TIP* I like to use blank emails for saving links and taking notes. I can then email to myself and organize in the corresponding folder. This makes the message easily searchable and easy to find for future reference.

3. Make the Items Checkable

The purpose behind creating bitesize, action tasks is so that an item can be completely checked off of the list as you work through the full list. You will feel so good adding that little check mark or cross-out! You'll be able to view your progress and see your hard work paying off.

4. Focus on One Thing

Are you a habitual multitasker like me? We need to work on that! Zero in on one task at a time and completely check it off before moving on to the next task. Put all of that great power in your brain to work on just one thing and allow room for creativity as your work. Going all in on one item at a time leaves space for idea bursts that can increase efficiency and increase the greatness of what you are working on.

5. Use Nice Things

I like to use nice notebooks and cute pens. Aesthetics matter for me! Also, if I'm working on a brand new idea, new project, or work for a new client, I like to use a fresh notebook. It just does something for me and helps me to get more into it. Figure out how and what you like to use to take notes and have them available and ready for use!

I also like to use colorful paperclips to tag pages in my notebook that I know I have not completed my thought or completed all tasks. I also like to use patterned or colorful mini binder clips to segment off a group of pages.

Remember, the main goal is set yourself up for success however that looks like for YOU! Maybe you have a system that works for you but it is completely unorthodox. As long as it's working and you are getting things done, keep it going!

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