The Power of Lists

A simple two-file system for to-do's

I'm working on routine. Not a schedule. When I schedule myself, I end up trying to cram something into every single minute of my life--and, of course, failing miserably.

What has been working for me lately is a list. I have two files I keep open on my computer, one called "to do," and one called "days." The "to do" file is non-dated things to do, including constants.

The "days" file is more of a calendar, except it isn't. The file lists Monday through Sunday, but it isn't static. As each day finishes, I change the date to a week later. I did this initially to help me keep track of these daily blog entries, but I found myself putting dated things to do into the file as well.

Of course, I still need a way to keep track of longer term dates, especially medical appointments, and I have a wall calendar and traditional computer calendar for that. But right now, for day to day, these two files work for me, whereas a traditional calendar does not.

Possibly related:

  • Remember the Milk, an online list management site accessible in several different ways including via cellphone.
  • List Organizer, which is for people who even have trouble writing their own lists.

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