#216 Plan carefully

A professional patient's work is never done, and as life starts gearing up towards the fall there are always lots of issues that need to be dealt with. The mental to-do list is ever growing, and the stress factor and pain levels are sure to follow.

But of course there is another way to get more stuff done with less stress! The "6 most important things I must do tomorrow" is an excellent tool.

The idea is so simple it's almost ridiculous, still this is what nearly doubled the efficiency of a large steel corporation back in the early 1900s, and also earned a man 25.000 dollars in twenty minutes  (in today's money that's approximately 500.000 dollars - you can read the whole story here.)

This is how to use this tool: Every night before you go to bed, write on a piece of paper - exactly - "The six most important things I must do tomorrow"... and you write down the things as they come to you. Not the 36 most important things, not the umpteen things I ought to do, but the six most important things I must do tomorrow. Then you number them according to priority, from most important number one, down to least important.

Each thing should be a complete task, but a doable activity, like paying your bills, answering an important email, scheduling an appointment, planning a meeting etc.

When you start your day, you start doing the first thing on your list, and continue downwards. A day when all six get done is a good day, and you can pat yourself on the back and be very proud. When you don't get them all finished, they may go on tomorrow's list, or you may need to break each activity into smaller tasks. If you get all your things done before lunch, that's a great day, and you can relax in knowing that you've got it covered.

Do this every day for two weeks, and you will be amazed at how you manage to get on top of things and how much more efficient you are.

Happy planning!


  1. Ok, you've inspired me. I'm a list maker from way back, but I always end up with a long list that simply intimidates the heck out of me when I look at it. I may have to tear my hand away after writing the six down... the "just one more" thing!

  2. Yay What the fog:) I totally get it... those endless to do lists have a way of making you feel _worse_ not better... this one really works, if you manage to stick to the format. Sometimes I find myself putting really BIG and shapeless stuff on there like "Clean the kitchen" which tends to spiral into a huge project involving total clean out of fridge, cupboards, oven, washing windows and ... that's just too much for me in one normal pain day.

    So now I add the magic timebox : "Clean the kitchen for 60 minutes"... and then I do just that, stop myself after 60 minutes, put a "check" on the list and feel way better:)