Perhaps it is because of an old school mindset of mine. Making a ‘to do‘ list for the day. And since Men Are From Mars, the mind is conditioned to make sure that the list is as long as possible to correspond to your Machiavellian ego that talks back and tells you how important and busy you are. Pat yourself on the back? Well, wait!
A ‘to do‘ list is definitely a process and part of the journey but it can hoodwink you into thinking that you have reached your destination. Offloading from an over clogged mind onto a piece of paper(my preferred style) or an organiser or a tablet might give you the illusion that the battle has been won. You let your guard down and begin to take things a little easy. The danger is that you feel so good when you’ve got your list all nice and organized that you take your foot off the gas and don’t get anything done – the list by itself gives you a feeling of relief and accomplishment in and of itself.
If you permit me to state the obvious, the best way to use your mind is to think creatively. Any gadget or paper can handle a ‘to do‘ list. Forgive me if I hurt your ego here.
Your boss or your notification prompts may help you move the needle from paper to action. Or given the times we are in, Conversational A.I can be a perfect ally.
What we could also encourage ourselves to do is to build a ‘To Not Do‘ list( forgive the contradiction here) so that priority and important tasks get the focus, attention and energy and the trivial many are either trashed or deliberately put on the back burner.
The best films are so because of not what you see but because of what you don’t see. Elimination and subtraction is a powerful proxy to make progress. But the jury seems to be still out on that since we live in the ‘Republic of Not Enough‘ and ‘more‘ is the operative four letter word.