Organizing Your To Do List

by Tina on August 11, 2010

When I was a little girl, we only went to “town” once a week. If you didn’t get what you needed then, you had to wait until the next week came around. Now, in our fast-paced, two-car family, convenience-store-on-every-corner lives, we’ve gotten out of the habit of batching our To Do lists.

Batching, or grouping similar actions, is a great commitment to make to yourself. Once you have your list of Actions, you can group the items in many different ways to save time and remain focused on the task at hand.

I’d like to share with you some very useful information regarding grouping “Actions” from a book called Getting Things Done by David Allen. Allen explains that there is a set of common categories of action reminders:

  • Calls – the list of all the phone calls you need to make. All you need is an available phone.
  • At Computer – anything that must be done at a computer (desktop, laptop, smartphone, etc.)
  • Errands – group together what you need to do when you are out and about. This category can be broken down further into subgroups such as Near Daycare, Near Work, Hardware Store, Grocery Store, etc.
  • At Office – if you work in an office, it is likely that there are certain things that can only be done there
  • At Home – again, there are certain things that can only be done when you’re at home
  • Agendas – things that might need to occur in a real-time interaction with someone (spouse, teacher, colleague…) or be brought up in a meeting (committee, team, staff)
  • Read/Review – things that must be read/reviewed before you can move forward on them

Your To Do list for each Action can be kept together or individually, on sticky notes, a legal pad, electronically on your computer or smartphone, etc. As long as you are comfortable with the method, you will be able to continue to add new items as appropriate and delete items you’ve completed. But, remember to log all your To Do items in this one designated place, or you’re likely to lose track of something important. This framework really works well.

So, try playing around with batching your To Do list this week. You’ll be glad you did. You can do this.

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven…” Ecclesiastes 3:1 (New International Version)

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 Hello, my name is Tina Bonifacio, and I am a Professional Organizer working with residential and commercial clients in the greater Savannah, Georgia area. For more information, visit Thanks for stopping by. You are welcome back anytime.

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