I have done one thing every single day for the last 3+ years, and I wholeheartedly believe that it is the #1 contributor to any success and momentum I’ve had.
It’s called a To-Done list.
Essentially, every single morning, I write down what I did the day before. Simple. Easy.
Sometimes, it’s a lot: had 4 zoom meetings, got started on a website design, sang a new demo for a musical theatre composer, and spoke on a podcast. And other days, it’s simple: vegged out all day, ate Ben & Jerry’s, and snuggled up under the covers with a movie.
At the end of the week, I condense my daily lists down to the highlights. And then I do the same at the end of the month, at the end of the quarter, and at the end of the year.
And by Dec. 31st, I’ve got a 12-page Google Doc of everything I did!
Here’s why I think it works so well:
1.) Productivity (Spoiler: You’re already productive.)
In a world where our worth is often directly tied to how productive we’ve been, it’s easy to feel like we haven’t done enough. The to-done list forces you to face how much you actually do get done. (And it’s probably wayyyyyyy more than you realize.)
Start that bath and pour yourself that second glass of wine, cuz you’ve freakin’ EARNED it. When you’ve been keeping a to-done list for a couple of months (and start to realize how much you’re actually doing all the time) it’s way easier to relax, celebrate your small wins, and bask joyfully in the time you spend away from your day-to-day.
We often complain that there’s not enough time in the day to do everything we want to be doing. Keeping a To-Done List challenges that. When you see how much you do, you start to realize how much time there actually is in a day!
And with that…
You can’t make good decisions without hard facts. You’re probably doing a lot of things you 1.) don’t have to be doing, 2.) could be automated or outsourced, or 3.) just don’t love to do. Writing it down helps you get clear on where your time goes, and where it could be re-allocated for more fulfilling activities.
There’s truly nothing better than going through your list at the end of the year with a glass of champagne in hand. (Plus, it’s a great catalyst for creating reflection scripts that, in turn, create great goals!)
I’m telling you. There is no better habit. (Alright, drinking a gallon of water every day might come close. But who does that!?)
If you start doing this and find some benefit, let me know! I am so inspired by the momentum of others and I just know this practice is a gamechanger!