Life hacks: The Power of To-Do lists

Ever had so much to do and you simply just headed straight to bed? You are not alone. Life gets overwhelmingly busy, doesn’t it? Always seems like there is so much to do but very little time to do it. It doesn’t help that we sometimes slip up and laziness takes over. There is however one small yet effective trick that can help ensure we get the things we want done, done.

The To-do list

The to-do list is a form of journalling and it is a very simple yet effective way to manage time, stay on track and basically, get things done. As far as they go, tools are very important. Whatever tools you like to employ, make sure you have a “system” that works for you. Whether traditional or modern, a to-do list is very essential for productivity.

When it comes to choice of tools to use, I believe traditional methods (pen and paper.) are always more effective than modern ones (taking notes on tablets or laptops.) Research shows that writing as opposed to typing helps improve your memory. I found this particular article very interesting.

Why use a to-do list?

To-do lists help keep you organized, productive and helps you get results. They are also a good way to remember the things you have done and the tasks pending. Don’t forget too, there is so much power in ticking tasks off as you do them, it gives you a feeling of accomplishment and also motivates you to keep going. Also, if your memory can be wonky like mine, (God help us.) a to-do list should be your best friend.

Using the To-do-list

  • Find a journal or notepad that appeals to you visually. This might be a personal thing but when something looks good visually, I am more attracted to use it. Just like beautiful book covers or fancy looking cutleries. The same applies to journals. Find one that looks great. If you are male, dark hard covers can be what works for you. Females tend to gravitate towards brighter colors. Whatever the case may be, make sure it looks good and presentable to you.
  • Find a journal that is handy. Not only visually appealing journals or note pads but also ones that are handy and easy to carry around. You wouldn’t want to abandon your journal because it turned into a weighty burden.
  • Commit to writing in the journal three times a day; Morning, Night and In-between. Morning to fill it out with tasks to be accomplished, in between as you get through the tasks and Night to see how productive you have been during the day. There is something about checking off the list that gives you a great sense of accomplishment and encourages you to keep going so be sure to do just that. It is important to keep it a daily thing, not a weekly or monthly thing as too many tasks needed to be completed can be highly discouraging.
  • Write the important ones and keep the list fairly short. Don’t overwhelm yourself, by yourself. Ever had so much to do but you just went to bed instead? It happens because having so much to do gives you that discouraging feeling that you just can’t handle it. Keep your list short and realistic with only the important things. Don’t cram too many tasks in one day, especially if you can help it. Remember, there are only 24 hours in a day and there is not much you and I can do about it.
  • Incorporate reward systems. I am definitely big on rewards. If you’ve worked hard, there should be a reward for your hard work. Reward yourself, why not? You could have been lazy and just being a couch potato, instead you got up and got work done. Bravo! I try to score my to-do lists and if I accomplish above 75% of the tasks in a week, I get myself a treat, no matter how little. It’s great, you should try it.
  • Don’t be too hard on your self. If you find that you rarely make it through your list, don’t give up, just keep at it and soon, you will become a task master.


To-do lists, even though they seem small, can make a huge difference to your productivity level. Most people start off having one but stray after a while but if you keep at it diligently, it can be oh so rewarding.

Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it.

Habakukk 2:2

So, grab yourself a new journal or note pad, write away!

Have the best weekend,

the ufuoma six

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  1. Interesting article…. I use Google Keep for my to-do list. It helps because I don’t have to carry an extra journal, its accessible on my laptop and I can tick off all my done items.

    1. Never heard of Google Keep. Good to know it works for you. I have tried several apps for a to-do list but they just don’t work for me. My social media always ends up distracting me. A classic book and pen works for me. And yeah, it can be quite a burden carrying an extra journal so going digital might be a good option. Thanks Simi.

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