What is the To-Done productivity system?
A productivity workflow that includes:
It is built around leveraging the to-done list to build the momentum you need to clear out your tasks with blissful efficiency.
Why use To-Done lists instead of To-Do lists?
To-do lists are a great way to keep track of outstanding tasks, they give your brain a break from remembering the 101 things you need to take care of. But everyone seems to fall for the same pitfalls when using them. Inevitably, they all get long and unwieldy, and breed feelings of stress and anxiety.
To-done lists track the tasks you've completed and finished. They've been shown to have a profound effect on boosting positive emotions, motivation, and ultimately productivity.
Anecdotally, I've found that tracking my finished tasks are an effective antidote for the feelings of anxiety and stress that typically accompany todo list and ultimately lead to procrastination.
How do I use the To-Done productivity system?
As with all productivity systems, there is no one size fits all system that will work for everybody. Ultimately productivity systems are about the rituals you go through to prime your brain to get high quality work done consistently. Whatever works for you is the right answer 🤗.
Now, this To-Done productivity system implements a productivity workflow I've found effective against the common pitfalls that plague all to-do lists – lists that are quickly forgotten, with tasks that are too big and vague, topped off on a schedule that is over-committed.
Every section in this doc, includes a
to help orient you to the purpose of the section, and the elements contained within it. Expand the header to read more details, and collapse when no longer needed to preserve visual real estate.
workhorse of this system is the processing ritual that happens every night
to set me up for success the next day
. This ritual operates with three central principles:
NO ZERO DAYS
– every day should be spent working on at least 1 goal that is personally meaningful and rewarding to me. I've found carving dedicated time to work on the things important to me is the only way to ensure that commitments from work and life don't quickly overshadow all my available time.
GET THE SMALLEST THING DONE
– leverage to-done lists to drive focus on getting a large number of small tasks done. Ultimately this uses the power of small wins to inspire positive emotions for powering through even the toughest tasks on the todo list.
CREATE TASTY TASKS
- all tasks on the todo list should be actionable, time-bound, and have a clear end state. This inspires confidence in the todo list and as a side-benefit helps you track how long tasks are actually taking.
👉 Head on over to the
to take a look at the master table powering all the views in this document