Finding time to get everything you need to do onto your To Do Lists … and then manage those lists so that they don’t overwhelm you … is really worth the up front investment. It takes practice and commitment, and no one system is going to be a perfect fit for everyone.
In fact, one of the keys as you work with these lists is to listen to the advice of the experts, try it, and slowly develop a process that works for you. There’s no right or wrong about this – YOU are the key!
Along those lines, I had a great question yesterday from Wendy J. who e-mailed me at email@example.com with a question about working with BIG goals. Here’s part of her e-mail:
I understand about being aware and flexible when I develop goals. My problem is an inability to figure out where or how to start working on a long range goal.
What a great question! It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by a very big task. The biggest challenge when working on a long-range goal is getting started. Here are four tips, to help you break the process down into steps:
- Begin by brainstorming all the tasks involved in your project. Be as inclusive as you can, and DON’T JUDGE! Jot everything you think of down on a list.
- Next, categorize all of the items you’ve listed. For example, if you wanted to build a house, you would put all the site development tasks into one category, and all the activities involved in obtaining permits in another. As you do this, you’ll begin to see order emerging from what may have felt like chaos!
- After you have identified tasks that go into a specific category, prioritize them. Adjust as needed. A timeline might be helpful as you do this.
- In order to be most effective, break down each activity into the smallest pieces possible. That way, the tasks will be doable, and you will experience immediate success.
Especially when working with big projects, it’s vital to know that you’ve covered all of the bases with an inclusive To Do List. Equally vital, however, is not overwhelming yourself with that list every day. Breaking down your goals into smaller steps gives you the positive feeling of completing things, while chipping away, step-by-step, on your gargantuan goal!
Are you inspired to find time and increase your effectiveness? I invite you to explore Secrets of Heart-Based Time Management – my chapter in the book I co-authored – Stepping Stones to Success!
© Copyright 2011 Paula Eder, Ph.D.