One of my favorite productivity techniques is the “NOT To-do list” unlike its cousin the To-do list the longer this list gets the less intimidating it becomes. There are many tasks that end up on your plate that don’t impact your goals but adversely affect your time. So what do you do with the items? Put them on a “NOT To-do list”? Make the decision that these items will not affect your time anymore. Here are ways I have found to deal with these tasks.
1) Delete the task: There are many tasks that show up on our To-Do list that you really don’t have to address. For e.g. most of us get numerous emails a day. You don’t have to respond to all them. It’s ok to just delete the emails that are not important to you.
2) Delay the task: There are tasks that come with a deadline or a sense of urgency, choosing to delay them may not harm the outcome. For e.g. if you are in the middle of completing an important task and the phone rings. Letting the caller leave you a message and following up with them later is a great way to stay focus.
3) Delegate: Even though some tasks are not important to your key goals it is essential that you complete them. For e.g. grocery shopping. Delegate this task to a trusted personal assistant and put it on your “NOT To-do list”.
4) Automate: There are technological tools that are introduced to the market every day that make your life easier. For e.g. I use Outlook to route emails from Key people to a special folder. This allows me to focus on these important emails first before sifting through the other emails.