To-do lists may work for some, but for others they're an overwhelming reminder of everything yet to be done. Fed up with his to-do list, Slate's John Dickerson suggests "blow[ing]up" the to-do list and figuratively going skydiving instead.
Photo by koalazymonkey.
Dickerson explains how he upped his productivity by "turn[ing]the big project into little action items" via a three-part method. Included in his methods is a skydiving list, which he describes accordingly:
Finally, there's the "Skydiving List," which represents the big picture or 36,000-foot view of my life. From there I try do dive down and create small actions that can be performed. It includes questions like "How can I teach my kids about generosity?" or "Do I need to change the filter in the furnace?"
None of this is entirely new if you're familiar with Getting Things Done author David Allen's horizons of focus, but it's a slightly different all-around take inspired by GTD and a few other productivity staples, like Merlin Mann's Hipster PDA. Dickerson suggests checking in with the skydiving list least once a week. Hit up the full link for explanations on the other two lists (the Hipster PDA and the Expletive List), and if you're not a fan of to-do lists, tell us how you get your "skydiving" tasks done in the comments.
The List Is Life [Slate]