Ticking a checklist!

The key to productivity and organisation!


If you haven’t yet realised I am a bit of a productivity geek – or should that be a freak!

For many years I have been obsessed with trying to get the most amount of the tasks completed in my week.

But where did this all start and how far have I come in my journey toward perfection?

It started with a book!

I really can’t say when this happened, but I know it was when I was recovering from severe anxiety. As part of my rehabilitation, I had to make weekly visits away from my small four-room flat to a local coffee shop. If you are interested about my coffee shop visits then you can read more here

steaming coffee cup
Image by Pfüderi from Pixabay

On one of my visits I started to read a book called “Getting Things Done” by Richard Allen. I am not sure what I was expecting but I found myself drawn into the world of productivity and how to ensure that I got everything I wanted to get done in the alloted time period.

Now I have to say at this point that I am not a productivity guru! I’m not one of these people that charge you to rearrange and organise your life!

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In fact I am probably more like a gnu rather than a guru! My aim in life it just to try and get everything done that I want to and to make the best use of my time. One thing that I really don’t like is that feeling when you get to the end of the day, week, weekend or holiday and feel that I have hardly got anything done! Surely someone else must have experienced this – creating a holiday list of everything to get done, only to find that you arrive at the end of the vacation with nothing ticked off!

Importance of workflows

My workflows to keep organised and productive extends from my part time job into my content creation. I’ve used a variety of software to support my productivity but I have to say, that it is never the software that makes me productive. It is my mindset and my workflow.

Many people assume that if they start using a task manager then their lives will suddenly become organised and they will be super productive! In fact, nothing could be further from the truth. If I had a pound for everything time I’ve seen people add all the tasks into a task manager and then never look at the program ever again, I would be a rich person!

The key to becoming more productive!

In order to become more productive and better organised the key element has to be mindset. Being more productive is being able to apply yourself to what needs to be done throughout the day. If you do not have this mindset then you will not become more productive. It is not the task manager that makes you productive!

You need to be able to apply yourself completely and trust in the workflow you have implemented. The task manager is just something that helps you maintain this focus and application.

Without the mindset I can assure you, nothing will improve!

Where to start!

To implement or start to nuture the mindset for productivity, I would recommend three easy tasks. You can do these in any order. But the important thing is to ensure that you maintain them for a significant period of time. Remember, it takes 30 days for an activity to become a habit – this is probably why many ‘life changes’ don’t work. They are not maintained for enough time!

So here are the three starting points:

  1. Start with one time zone within your day and make a short list each day what you want to try and complete in this period. This will help you to start to get an idea about how long tasks take. If you start with a short list you will also have success that will help you maintain the activity.
  2. Things about your daily routine. What are the tasks that need to be completed every day? Implement a routine into one area of your day – the morning is always a good place to start – and ensure that you implement and complete this routine.
  3. Rehearsal with a variety of methods for capturing tasks. Capturing tasks is when something is identified as needed to be done and you make a note of it. I use an electronic system for this (See the ClickUp video above) but it doesn’t have to be electronic. It just needs to be a system that you can use easily and works for you.

Implementing and sustaining these three activities will definitely help you to start down the road to being better organised and more productive.


Remember, there is no ‘proper’ way to use a task manager or a ‘proper’ workflow. It needs to be something that works for you and that you can maintain. If you want you look at what other people’s systems. But if that system doesn’t work for you then try a different or your own way.

I hope my journey has been supportive and you feel that you have taken your first steps towards a more productive lifestyle!

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links to products. I may receive a commission for purchases made through these links. I like these products and would definitely recommend them to you. Ian Wilson is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com

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