it was with great consternation that i read “Why Creating A To-Do List Is Derailing Your Success” on Fast Company.
apparently, my favorite organizational tool is not faring well. as Kevin Kruse, the author of 15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management, puts it, “to-do lists are where important tasks go to die.” not cool, Kev. not cool.
apparently, the wildly productive among us live by their calendars, not lists. since i only use the calendar on my phone for doctor’s appointments, the dates of Mercury retrograde, and reminders to pay my rent, i feel threatened.
calendar folk pre-schedule all top priority items on repeat. life’s urgent silliness receives just 15 minutes. although it sounds short, time limits are essential for distracting tasks like online research. otherwise, 45 minutes and 61 tabs later, you’re way off track. one of the to-do list's drawbacks is how there aren't any time limits.
but i insist there’s still a place for the loosey-goosey to-do list. because if this calendar method is so efficient, you’ll need a stockpile of items at hand so you can continue accomplishing without pausing to think about what to do next.
maybe the ideal sequence is to brainstorm everything you need to do and create a master to-do list, so nothing’s left floating in your brain. from there, label them important or urgent and schedule accordingly.