Figuring Out Where To Start When You Want To Get Things Done

One of my flaws is that I have a tendency to do too many things at once and I consequently overextend myself. This usually results in me becoming stressed, worn out and lacking sleep. And trust me, you don’t want me to not get enough sleep.

On the other end of the spectrum, I sometimes don’t know where to start in getting things done.  That usually results in me being paralyzed and not getting anything done. So many things! Not sure where to start! But I want to do it all! Yup. Counterproductive, at best.

Here are some strategies I’ve been using to stop being scared and start getting things done.

Make a list

Lists are my friend. And they should be your friend, too. Making a to do list helps break up what you need to do into small chunks. Instead of staring at a mountain of unknown height, you know exactly how tall it is and what you need to do to get there. Make a paper list, use an online app, or use the list function that’s built into your computer or email software. I don’t care how you make your list, just make one. And that feeling of crossing things off? So satisfying.

Plan your weekends

Weekends are an excellent time for getting things done… if you plan them right. Plan a weekend? Yeah, that’s right, you heard me. As Jessica Stillman of Inc. argues, there are a lot of hours in a weekend and that’s too many to go unplanned. Plan your relaxation time, for sure. But also plan some time to work on your to-do list. When you’ve crossed some important items off of your list instead of watching a marathon of Law and Order, you’ll be glad you planned.

Pick one thing to focus on at a time

There have been studies that have shown that multi-tasking is not an efficient use of time. Sometimes, attacking all of the things you need to do comes down to picking one thing – and doing it! Prioritize your to-do list. What’s a low hanging fruit? Do you find value in accomplishing the longer, more complex tasks first? Whatever your strategy, just make up your mind and do it. Of course, it may not be completely possible to nix multi-tasking, but minimizing where possible is definitely advised.

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