Index cards have saved my life!
After a nice little gap of non-posting I am back for more! haha.
The main reason I haven’t been posting is simply that I have had so much stuff going on that frequently posting on my blog just kind of passed my mind. I have been pursuing many different projects and opportunities and have spent a LOT of time testing out dozens and dozens of new companies to buy traffic from. I have such a new view on different sources of traffic and how things work….its been great. I have also learned many things in these ventures for virgin "untapped" traffic sources.
But all of that aside…which I will post about here in the near future…
I am REALLY posting to tell everyone a little "secret" weapon of mine.
I have been doing some testing on things in just my regular lifestyle to increase what I get done and keep me on top of things. I want to stress to everyone the importance of keeping an ACTIVE WRITTEN to do list. That’s right. It has to be written with pen or pencil onto paper. None of this keeping a to do list on the blackberry or iPhone…that just doesn’t cut it.
I am dead serious…
I have been testing this out for MANY months now and the only way I can keep track of things with my spontaneous lifestyle is to literally keep an index card in my pocket and constantly jot whatever needs to be done onto my card. Every single time I finish a task I cross it off the list. I think this is where it makes the real difference of having it written down. Something about clicking the delete key makes finishing tasks seem like not as big of a deal as if you get to strike that sucker off the list of that piece of paper that you carry around and look at repeatedly throughout the day. Its like a constant reminder that you are ACTUALLY getting things done.
If you really want to be a bad ass, at the end of every night (or right away when you wake up) you can transfer all your unfinished tasks to a new card. Kind of put the impression of what needs to get done into your head before bed (or right at the start of the day). Than you have a nice fresh idea of what needs to get done the rest of the day.
I know this seems like something extremely simple and it is very hard to believe a simple task like this could make such a big difference in your life, but try it. It WILL be worth it!
If you do something similar to this, or decide to give it a try…please post about it, I would love to hear your opinions!
Hey Trev, I’ve been doing this for ages, since I started programming really and it works great. Apart from the satisfaction it gives you from crossing those suckers of the list :), it also prevents you from thinking too much about what you gotta do, so it’s less likely to get sidetracked with other stuff.
One tip I would give is don’t put too much on your list, just what is most important to you right now. When I don’t my mind gets torn between all the different things on the list, making it difficult to decide what to do first. To combat this I sometimes cross less important things off my list just for that reason.
Aside from paper to-do lists I also use paper to brainstorm. Just taking a piece of paper and writing everything down that’s in your head can help organize your thoughts a lot. I know there are these brainstorm/mindmap apps and they have their place. But I’m talking more about when your head is full of ideas and it’s getting too crowded. Dumping that stuff on a piece of paper and prioritizing/organizing it helps me a lot, and it often also leads to to-do items of course.
Good tip Trevor. For seriously process-driven stuff, at least giving “Getting Things Done” a skim is worth it – I’m not disciplined (or crazy enough) to become a full-blown GTD nazi but the little bit I’ve implemented has vastly changed my productivity,
@JP I totally agree with the braindump/brainstorming on paper. Nice addition!
@Matt Thanks for that recommendation, I’ll check it out and see if its worthy 😛