Get more done with these effective to do list techniques.

Learn how to work smarter with these simple tips for more effective to do lists.

To do lists shouldn’t make you feel guilty at the end of the day. They should make you feel accomplished, organized, and successful. So if your to do list isn’t helping you get more things done, it’s time for a change. Here are some things you can do to make your to do list more effective.

Limit your list to tasks.

Everything you jot down on your to do list should matter. So it’s important that you only write down tasks (or things you have to do). If you start writing down long-term goals, like paying off your mortgage, your to do list loses its effectiveness.

Limit your to do lists to things you can accomplish now, tomorrow, or in a month. And break down your long-term goals into baby steps you can cross off as you go.

Make your list easy to read.

It’s also important that you look at your to do list often throughout the day (or week or month). So your list should be easy to read at a glance to get the most out of it. And, whether you use a paper list, an app, or an Excel sheet, make sure your to do list is scannable so you can check it often and check it quickly. Use these tips to make your own effective list format:

No matter how you organize your to do list, make sure it makes sense for you and your life. And — as your list becomes a part of your everyday life — take a moment to appreciate how much you’ve done.

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