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5 Reasons Why You Need to Ditch Your To-Do List to Be More Productive



to do list

How often do you use your to-do list? Do you use it on a daily or weekly basis? The truth is, it doesn’t really matter. We all seem to be looking for that simple solution to systemize our planning and get everything done, yet with all the advice and tools out there, it’s certainly not easy to put into action.

In fact, that’s the first problem, there’s too much out there! Wouldn’t you agree? Never mind an ever-growing to-do list haunting you each day. When I started working as a productivity coach, I always struggled to master my to-do list.  I starting adding columns for time estimates and priorities, but I never seemed to feel very productive with it. Over time I started to find that without my to-do list, I was actually more productive.

Below, are 5 reasons why you should consider ditching your to-do list:

1. Not having a list forces you to schedule your tasks

Productivity is all about action; this is my top reason for ditching the list.  When something is on a list, there is no action, but when it is in your calendar, you are more likely to take action. When you want to put something on a list, take a minute to think about when the best time to do it is. Then schedule it directly into your calendar.

Don’t put it on a list; you commit when you schedule. You can always reschedule the task, but if you have all your to-do’s in your calendar, you can also see how much time you actually have and this forces you to prioritize as well. Maybe you don’t actually need to have that item on the list in the first place.

“If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done.” – Bruce Lee

2. A never-ending list only makes you feel overwhelmed

Having a long to-do list is very overwhelming and frustrating. It’s not exciting to know that you have a million tasks to still get through and every day you will keep adding more. The mind gets overwhelmed and you wonder how you will ever get anything done. That is counterproductive and leaves you feeling like you will never see the end of the list. Why do you want to do this to yourself?

3. A to-do list gives you a false sense of accomplishment

Another form of procrastination happens all the time with lists; choosing items that will give you quick gratification and menial tasks that don’t really need to be done. I’m betting most people choose tasks based on other criteria than importance; tasks that make you feel busy, but get you nowhere. You will most likely tick off the easy tasks to give you a sense of accomplishment, but you know you really aren’t getting any closer to your real goals.

4. Don’t have so many systems to co-ordinate

Having one less ‘system’ to use helps you save heaps of time. You don’t need to have an extra list where you spend time writing everything down and then again, reviewing it regularly. Imagine how much time is saved there alone. You can keep your notes and your future ideas and plans in another system.

If you use Google Keep, it works really well to keep your notes and ideas there and you can even put reminders for the future linked to your calendar so you know you will come back to it. There are other ways to keep your notes.

“People are remarkably bad at remembering long lists of goals. Clarity comes with simplicity.” – Brendon Burchard

5. To-do lists are unclear

Last but certainly not least, this was the first frustration I found with the lists. Not having any idea what the priority level was or how long the task would take. So, I started adding columns to my lists, including how long I think the task would take and how important it was. Going through that list though, wasn’t so easy and it just felt like such a huge task every day. I knew something was amiss.

I felt so free the day I decided to ditch my to-do list. At the end of the day, productivity is about doing things smarter, and I think it’s clear that to-do lists are something of the past, or they should be. To-do lists don’t help you free up more time, they take time away from you!

Not all the tools and tricks of the past work today and this is another example of that. The most productive people don’t use lists, they schedule their to-do’s and if you really want to take your productivity to the next level, you should too.

Are you still using a to-do list? If so, what are you experiences with it? Leave your thoughts below!

Kirstin O’Donovan is a “multinational” productivity coach, author and founder of TopResultsCoaching an international company providing coaching services in nearly a dozen countries. With over 10 years working in the field of coaching and personal development, she provides her expertise to help individuals create the life and results they desire.   Kirstin also writes for various international publications in personal development. Kirstin, a certified NLP Practitioner, holds various qualifications, certificates and credentials related to personal and business coaching. She is the author of ‘Maximize your time to maximize your profit’ and Co-Author of ‘The Confident Woman’ and ‘There is GOLD inside YOU.’

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All of us come to this world with our own reserve of magic unfortunately, not everyone can unleash it



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There is no greatness without becoming and there is no becoming with authenticity



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In just a few weeks, we will be wrapping up 2023. Can you believe it? This year has been absolutely incredible for me.

I have seen amazing doors opened, new relationships formed and I am seeing dreams realized in my life. While this seems like the hallmarks of a great year, this has also been the most challenging year of my life. With all of the change happening in my life, I have been forced out of my comfort zone and challenged to grow in every area of my life.

I can truly say that I have made the most of my moments this year and I have used everything as a catalyst for maximizing my greatest potential.

As a revolutionary leader, I have the pleasure of consulting and advising leaders around the world to fulfill purpose, realize their greatest potential and make an impact.

I want to share some insights with you that will help you to break cycles of mediocrity and manifest your greatness

Everything legal must come through the matrix

I am sure that some of you are wondering why I am using the term matrix. However, what you have to understand is that I am trying to make a highly complex spiritual principle practical to understand.

Regardless of your spiritual beliefs, every life has an origin and I believe that origin is divine and begins with eternity. You are birthed from eternity and into time to fulfill a unique purpose and assignment in your lifetime and generation.

The matrix is simply the portal or vehicle that brings something out of the invisible realm and into tangible form. The problem with much of the teaching today is that it excludes the matrix. We are told to believe that success is instantaneous and overnight.

Nobody talks about how a dream progresses through stages beginning with visualization and ultimately culminating in manifestation. Without a matrix or portal then everything that you attempt to birth and build will be illegal.

The matrix not only makes you legal but it gives you the authority and power to function as the greatest expression of who you were created to be. 

Every matrix has an incubation process

While many people admire and respect me today, I remember a time when nobody knew who I was or the significance of my message. How did I get to where I am today? I got here through an incubation process.

In other words, everything that has been destined for your life is incubating and awaiting a set time of manifestation. The problem is that most people live their entire lives idle and never initiate the incubation process.

What do I meany by that? Most people are living reckless and very few people are living intentionally. I am amazed at the number of people I have conversations with that have no vision, goals or strategies for their lives. They show great promise and they have undeniable potential.

However, without development they will die with their dreams still in them.

Everything that has been destined for your life must be incubated and converted to become realities born to time. 

“Visualize this thing that you want, see it, feel it, believe in it. Make your mental blueprint and begin to build.” – Robert Collier

You must give expression to that which is not yet born to time

When you think about a matrix or a prophetic incubation process, you have to understand that potential is often unrealized and untapped. In other words, your potential is in raw form and your potential cannot serve you as long as it is untapped.

The thing that makes me valuable is that I have the ability to convert potential into power. I have done it in my own life and I have empowered leaders around the world to do the same. How do you convert potential into power?

First, it is important to note that you have to perceive potential. If you cannot perceive your potential then you can never cultivate your potential. In addition, you must take the time to cultivate your potential. We often get excited about our capabilities; however, we never expand our capacity in order to realize our greatest potential.

In other words, the strength of your potential is only discovered through your willingness to stretch. The more we are challenged the more we are empowered to expand our capacity for greatness. Most of all, you must begin to express your potential. The expression of potential is different for every person.

For example, the expression of my potential is best demonstrated through the thoughts, ideas, products, services, books, etc.

For another person the expression of potential may look like a screenplay, artwork, sports, scientific discoveries, medical breakthroughs, etc.

Regardless of the form of expression, I know that you will live empty and unfulfilled until you make the decision to express your potential. The expression of your potential gives voice to your dreams, life to your vision, significance to your moments and activates your true power.

You must manifest your greatness

As a revolutionary thinker and leader, my work has impacted people around the world. I am grateful that my life is a source of empowerment to so many people. However, before anyone could ever benefit from my life, I had to make a non-negotiable decision to become who I was born to be.

I wish I could tell you that this journey is easy and that you will get there overnight. However, in a world that celebrates us for doing we are often criticized for being. As a result, I wasted a lot of time trying to be who other people wanted me to be instead of being who I was born to be.

There is no greatness without becoming and there is no becoming with authenticity. It is through our bravery to be vulnerable that we ultimately manifest our greatness. We do not bless the world by being a duplicate. We bless the world when we honor our difference. When you honor your difference you honor your potential.

Ultimately, your difference is how you manifest your greatness.

When you present anything but your authentic self to the world, you are playing small and you are robbing the world of your significance. Manifesting your greatness requires you to master your gifts.

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