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... is to maximize your productivity when you are working so that you can get more stuff done in shorter periods of time.
By working smarter, you'll find yourself with more time in the day to sleep, exercise, be creative, and recharge. And the key to getting through your to-do list faster is by working smarter -- without sacrificing the quality of your work.
The best one for you depends entirely on your working style and personal preferences.
You can use a physical notebook around everywhere you go, but it's easier to use a to-do list app or tool that syncs across all your devices. That way, you can access your to-do items whenever and wherever you need to, whether you're at your desk, in a meeting, or on a business trip.
Write out your to-do list the day before:
You can’t really clean up your schedule if you don’t know what’s in it—and that includes all the things on your literal and official calendar and all the things that aren’t.
Once you know what’s on your calendar, ask yourself: “What is the purpose of each thing on here? Are we accomplishing that or does something need to change?”
Question each task. Start with recurring meetings, which can very easily build up and take over your calendar.
... and put them in one of four quadrants:
Time-blocking consists of assigning individual tasks to manageable time slots.
Instead of writing out short tasks alongside hours-long tasks on your list for the day and hoping you have enough time to tackle it all, this approach lets you set realistic goals for yourself one task at a time.
To set reasonable goals make a list for high-energy days and another for when you are reluctant to work. Both lists should follow an “if/then” model.
The first lists should have the more involved tasks, while the second list should feature more mindless tasks like cleaning out your inbox, organizing your desk, or even napping.