Improve your productivity. To-do lists: pros & cons

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It is highly likely that you have written a to-do list at some point.

 

But new research has shown that these lists are not for everyone — and may even be counterproductive for some.

So, how do you know if it is right for you and your way of working? Experts say you need to be honest about your productivity habits.

“Look to see if you’re having trouble at the beginning of the day getting started or if your trouble is feeling a sense of accomplishment at the end of an otherwise busy day,” said procrastination researcher Dr. Timothy A. Pychyl, an associate psychology professor at Carleton University and author of “Solving the Procrastination Puzzle.”

If getting motivated is the issue, the to-do list is for you. Why? It helps you identify and hone in on high-priority items. “This will focus your energy and get you going,” said Pychyl.

Are you however someone who tends to procrastinate? If so, then skip the to-do list, says efficiency expert Dr. Fuschia Sirois, a professor of psychology at the University of Sheffield.

“Simply writing out that list might make procrastinators not want to do the list even more because it’s proof that they have a lot to do,” she said.

Lists should be keep short, with a narrow focus, and zero in on what you need to tackle next, then what steps you need to action in order to do so. Create seperate lists for long-term jotting, so as not to create one complicated extensive document. Short term lists are ideal for ticking off quickly, long term require more detailed focus and are likely to represent bigger goals.

 

Read the full article here and watch a video on the ‘2 minute daily task that can change your life’: http://goo.gl/b7dn5D 

 

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    Amelia Walker

    Editor – PA Life

    All stories by: Amelia Walker