Have you ever found yourself struggling to keep up a to do list ?
In my drive to become more organised, a better businessman and generally more efficient I decided to start using a to do list.
It didn’t last long. Less than a week in fact, as I ticked off all the nice and easy jobs on the list but then backed out of doing the “tough stuff”
So I feel as though I’m back to square one again.
Struggling to keep up a to do list has been a part of my life as far back as I can remember. As you can see its something that has been at the fore front of my mind recently but breaking the chains of old habits is a tough thing to do.
At school, I always used to leave doing my homework until the last minute, never doing the appropriate amount of reading necessary to tackle an assignment properly – this trait has followed me throughout my adult working life and now this bad habit of leaving everything I don’t really like doing to the last minute is coming back to bite me on the bum.
Late tax returns, late regulatory returns, research and reports all done in a last minute rush – this isn’t a good way to conduct my life but for some reason this is the way the way that I treat everything.
I ask myself am I lazy ? – but I don’t think I am – maybe you might think so.
The crazy thing is, that I know what I have to do – but if I think its going to be boring, hard, tough or I don’t fancy doing it – then it doesn’t get done. I can spend hours knowing that I should do a task immediately but delay, prevaricate, dither, even invent new more important things to do, than actually tackle the task at hand. Then it gets put off until tomorrow when I persuade myself that I will feel more like doing things. Then the whole process starts again.
Its a form of mental torture. I know it needs doing – I can’t bring myself to do it.
If I ask myself the question ” are there anything tasks that I do straight away” then to be honest I can’t think of anything that gets done immediately.
Am I dynamic in any aspect of my life ? – other than running an amazing fishing club I think the answer has to be no. Not at all good.
If I want to be successful, to transform my life then this behaviour pattern has to change.
I set off to work this morning with the intention of writing out a new “to do” list – and getting on with things, but like everything else that should be on the list, I’ve found more important things to do – this blog post for example!
So….. now…..what to do ?
I write a to do list, but then do the easy, unimportant stuff but leave the tough, unpalatable tasks until later. I’m sure there is a scientific name for these characteristics that I’m showing. I call it being an idiot.
I’m signing off now til Friday, time to man up and get some of these tasks that have been hanging over my head for ages done.
I’ve written out a huge list of the jobs that I need to do to bring things up to date (yet another list), this time I have ranked the jobs from 1 to 5.
All the 1s and 2s are nice easy simple enjoyable tasks, the 4s and 5s the stuff that I always leave until later.
For the rest of this week, I am going to complete two category 5 tasks each morning before I do anything else, then move on to the 1s and 2s after lunch. I work better in the mornings, so hopefully this will make things easier.
I hope this little system works for me. Something has to change. I hope its me.