I don’t remember the first time I created a to-do list, but I know that I’ve been using them for a while. I usually try and write down my lists rather than leaving them in my head because it frees up my brain to remember other things. Also the feeling of accomplishment I get from crossing a task of my list helps me feel as though I am making progress. I generally have several different checklists going at once for different reasons. Some are big picture with tasks like ‘write a book’ and others are smaller like ‘write chapter one’.
Unfortunately many of my to-do lists have half finished tasks. Which is frustrating at times because I feel like I’m not doing everything that I should be. Sometimes it’s because I’ve set myself too much to do, but I am getting better at setting realistic and achievable goals as I (slowly) realise how long it actually takes me to do things. Sometimes however I did have the time, but I just didn’t use my time the way I should have. Of course there are occasionally emergencies, but other times it is simply because I procrastinated or I got distracted by other things. I’m trying to be more conscious of how I use my time because I don’t want to waste it and to-do lists work almost like an accountability partner.
To-do lists might not work for everyone, but I find them helpful. I like seeing a visual representation of everything I have to do and the progress I’ve made. I’ve found myself becoming more aware of time and find it easier to set achievable goals. My system is not perfect and sometimes I have to discard unfinished to-do lists because they are no longer relevant, but most of the time I’m able to make progress in my list and that is why I keep using them.