I use an app on my phone called UpWord Notes that allows me to categorize my notes.
I use this app to keep running to-do lists by life category. These categories include Health, Fitness, Family, and Finance, to name a few. I only include categories that are important to me.
Within each category, I write down things I want to accomplish in the near future (within the next week or two).
These can be one-time tasks, like “call bank,” or things I aim to do every day. For example, in my Health list, I write to-dos like “eat 4 servings of vegetables” and “go to bed by 10pm.”
Each morning, I take a few minutes to copy the individual to-dos I want to accomplish that day from their respective category lists into a list called “Today,” so I’ll end up with to-dos from each life category on my Today list.
I usually have anywhere from 5–10 to-dos for the day.
My end goal on any given day is simple: complete everything on the Today list.
This is my only goal because these are the things I have thought through in advance and determined to be the most important things to accomplish that day.
Sometimes I get through all of them, but many times, I don’t.
The important thing is that it’s a daily exercise in mindfulness. With each to-do that gets crossed off, I accomplish one small thing that’s related to an important area in my life.
Accomplishing just a few key things daily helps keeps me focused long-term on the big things that matter most to me.
First published on Quora.
Featured image by Kristopher Roller.