Jumbled To-Do Lists: Productivity’s Dirty Little Secret?

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Contexts are ways to organize what you have to do into the tools or locations you would use them. For example, organizing the list of people you need to call would get the context “@phone”.

I was getting a little overwhelmed by seeing the uneven lists of chores broken down by the tools I use them, especially the “@computer” list. I’m a web developer, and most of my work is done at the computer. Ugh. So, to alleviate my aversion to productivity while online, I decided to mix up all of my lists I had made for today. They contained housework, computer work, miscellaneous errands around town, people to phone, blogs to write, etc. etc. etc. I just threw them into one big list and started hammering away at it. And so far the results have been surprisingly good.

There’s something that I should note before we go any further. There was a teeny bit of planning while jumbling the list. I purposely placed items equally spaced apart so that I could be at the computer for a good length of time without having to drive somewhere. So for example, I didn’t put “email Mr. X” in between “close bank account” and “go to grocery store”. I’ve found if I’m at the computer too long, my productivity lags. A lot. So by mixing up my other chores and not worrying about contexts, my day (thus far) has been more productive.

I know, I know. This concept is nothing new. I’ve even mentioned it a couple of times before at LifeDev. But it’s always nice to see real-life examples, isn’t it?

P.S.- If you don’t want to get all crazy just yet with your lists, check out this article by Merlin at 43Folders about simplifying your contexts. It looks like it should help.

Source: http://lifedev.net
All articles from this source: lifedev.net (10)

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