My steps to Writing Functional To Do Lists

Since I have been using this method so diligently, I have gone ahead and designed a planner insert for this particular form of functional listing.

For as long as I can remember, I have been obsessed with list making. I don’t know if it’s the idea of feeling busy and productive or just getting new notepads, whatever it is; I am a list maker. I’m pretty sure if something requires more than one item, I have a list for it! My main pride and joy in the lists category is, of course, my ever growing to do list and it has taken me a very long time to figure out how to write a functional to do list that was not bogging down my productivity.

So what is the formula?

It’s not rocket science really but it does require a few tools. A brain dump notebook or anything else you can use as your actions inbox. I have a little Kate Spade notebook tucked into my planner for this but any notebook will do. The key is to write down an action as soon as you think of it.

You will also need some good writing tools. My go to pens are: a Staedtler triplus, the MMD Quinn pen, and a Mildliner highlighter. I alternate the pens for different planners and use the Mildliner to highlight the tasks that I have completed.

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The last thing you will need is a system to organize your tasks. Being a planner girl, I obviously recommend getting a planner if you don’t already have one. It’s a great way to have all of your to do’s organized in a clear and concise manner.

The steps to creating the perfect to do list are very simple. Mine are a simplified version of the GTD method and it has been working out splendidly. My first step is a weekly gathering of information. In this step I go through all of my brain dump notes and check all of my project and business due dates and come up with a long list of action items that need to be completed. I then divide those action items into 3 categories: to do’s, projects, and to buys.

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In the to do action items I include anything that is a personal action item and anything that concerns my home and self-development. Under projects I include all the action items that relate to current project I am working on and anything concerning my business. I have a video outlining how I project plan here if you are interested in getting more detail information. Lastly, in the to buy portion I note any action items that require purchases or subscriptions. This is an important factor that helps me stay on top of my budgets for the week.

After the new action items are organized, I check in with last week’s items. Anything that has not been completed or has been migrated forward will take priority at the top of the lists for the week to come.

Since I have been using this method so diligently, I have gone ahead and designed a planner insert for this particular form of functional listing that you can purchase on the MMD site here.

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I hope this has helped you find a new way of checking off those tasks! If you have any suggestions for me or would like to know more about my methods of productivity, feel free to message me and I’ll be sure to respond.