Sometimes I wonder how we all survived before sticky notes. They sure come in handy for jotting down my daily reminders and holding myself accountable!
The discipline of writing out a daily prioritized task list (organized by importance and urgency) is a hallmark of a productive person. I begin each day with a to-do list, and it certainly has made me more focused and effective. (And, yes, when unexpected items arise, I add them to the list and cross them out after completion. There’s power in a sense of accomplishment!)
Here’s an idea. What if we took this concept beyond its daily application and take a “sticky pad” approach to planning our lives? After all, the most successful people begin with dreams and then establish goals and plans to make them come true.
How can the sticky note approach work for you?
Poor or random planning puts your dreams in jeopardy and, at best, makes it take that much longer to realize them. But, even if you’re not naturally a goal-setter, it’s not difficult to become one. Start by imagining what you want your life to look like. What are the large-scale goals you hope to achieve? Think of areas like your education, career, service opportunities, family, finances, health, experiences, passion areas, and interests.
Once you’ve established your long-term goals, you can set some shorter-range goals that will help you achieve them. You can set one-year, six-month, and one-month goals, all of which will ultimately contribute to the larger picture.
At the same time, don’t forget those daily to-do lists! You’ll be amazed how much more you accomplish. It doesn’t have to be a fancy leather-bound day-timer to keep you on track. Many times all you need is a vibrant-colored sticky note placed somewhere visible to remind you what you hope to accomplish that day! Oh, and once all your items are checked off the list, be sure to take some time to celebrate for a job well done. You deserve it.
“If you don’t know where you are going, you will probably end up somewhere else.”
Lawrence J. Peter
What kinds of goals have you established for the short-, intermediate-, and long-term? What strategies have you learned to help accomplish them?
We’d love to hear your ideas!