The Benefits Of Making To-Do Lists

As a responsible adult, you’ve got a lot of stuff you have to do. There are bills to pay, chores to finish, and work to be done, and at times, it sure can seem like a lot. If you’re feeling overwhelmed about all the things you need to do, one of the best ways to cope is to create a to-do list. You’ve probably made to-do lists in the past, but if, for whatever reason, you haven’t lately, here are some reasons you should be.

Organize and Prioritize

The best aspect about a to-do list is that it lays out all of your obligations in black and white, right there in front of you. That action alone can be destressing, almost like cleaning up a messy room. Once you’ve written out all your responsibilities, you can begin to sort them by priority level, starting with what you must finish ASAP. Your list of tasks (and possibly subtasks) will give you a sense of scope of the work that you must do.

Give Yourself a Plan of Action

Once you’ve got your list written out, you’ll be able to start strategizing on how you will go about accomplishing your goals. Because you’ve written out your tasks, they’re now more actionable, meaning that you’ll be more likely to do them. Writing out your responsibilities will make them seem more “real,” rather than a vague idea bouncing around in your head.

Estimate When You’ll Be Able to Finish

Keeping a mental list of all the things you need to do isn’t just exhausting; it’s also overwhelming. Do you ever find yourself thinking of one task you have to do and then suddenly remembering another thing, and then another thing? Once you’ve set up a prioritized to-do list, you can estimate how long each task will take to complete, effectively determining when you’ll be all finished. This is harder to do when you’re mentally juggling a lot of tasks and their time estimates.

Less Likely to Forget a Task

Speaking of mental juggling, you’re more likely to forget to do something if you don’t write it down. While you may remember the broad strokes of each of your responsibilities, the devil, they say, is in the details. By writing out your duties and the subtasks involved in finishing each task, you’ll not only remember all the steps to finish the task, but you’ll also be less likely to mess it up.

Feel Accomplished

There’s no feeling quite like crossing off an item of a to-do list. There’s a sense of relief when you set up a goal and successfully knock it down. While you may get this sense of accomplishment from keeping a mental list, it’s another thing to physically cross the task off a list.

Writing out a to-do list means that you’ll be more likely to finish your obligations and you’ll feel better about doing so. While you would do well to write your errands out on a piece of paper, you might do better to use an app to keep track of everything, especially if you have a lot of work to do. Apps such as Evernote, Google Keep, and Todoist work on both the web and your smart phone, and they have features such as due dates and subtasks built in. When it comes down to it, everyone has different preferences, so as long as you find a way to get your work done, that’s all that matters!

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