How list-making and organizing improve quality of life
September 15, 2015 § 4 Comments
I love lists and list-making. Because I’m thinking 5 thoughts at the same time, this means I need to write things down, otherwise I either forget what I was thinking or I tend to get overwhelmed.
Apart from daily to-do lists, I also write:
- Shopping lists – sufficet to say Elvin doesn’t go shopping without a shopping list :). This comes very handy!
- Weekly menus – this is work in progress, but it does make my life easier
- Scheduling my work out sessions – this is a new addition, and very much work in progress
- Wardrobe planning – that’s right, I think about what I will wear a long time in advance. This way, if I need to organize a last minute trip I already have combinations of clothes and jewelry created and all I need to do is pick out those pre-defined items from my wardrobe. I can’t even begin to tell you how helpful this is!
- Special occasion menus – if I know we will be entertaining guests, I think in advance about what I would like to cook. Naturally, I have a million ideas so thinking things through helps me make a selection
- Lists for gifts – yes, you read that correctly, I think in advance about what a certain friend or family member might need or jot it down immediately if I hear them mentioning something. Because I hate shopping at the last minute, I try to do it in advance.
So, why is list-making helpful?
- Helps alleviate stress – what is down on paper is no longer messing with your mind. You also make sure you address any critical items and don’t miss any important appointments etc.
- Saves tons of time – we spend a minimal amount of time around supermarket aisles because we know exactly what we need to buy. In a similar vein, I have reduced the time I need to pack my suitcase to a minimum because I already know what I want to wear
- Predictability – if you know you have x, y, z items on your to-do list this helps compartmentalize your day
- Streamlining and simplifying – knowing the details of what you need to do eliminates the guesswork and the associated stress
- It creates space for fun – list-making and organizing is not a dry and boring activity. You can actually plan for fun – what special dish will you cook? When will you book a massage? What cute present will you buy for your mum?
How do I organize my lists?
Although I’m very much a pen and paper girl, a lot of my planning goes into my outlook calendar – simply because that is the calendar I use most during the day. I tag appointments or to do lists there and the added advantage is that I also get reminders throughout the day.
When I have random ideas about blog posts I want to write, dishes I want to cook etc. I just jot them down in a blank email and save them as drafts. This way, I can easily access them and make any edits at a later point.
What is your favourite way of organizing your thoughts, lists and to-dos?