the evolution of the to do list

In the last few years I have written to-do lists most mornings in an effort to keep on top of my various responsibilities. (Of course all the productivity websites in the world couldn’t tell me what I really needed to do, which was remove alcohol from my life. Writing a to-do list while boozing is like making sure that all the hand basins on the Titanic are really clean…)

The daily list before the 100 day challenge was written on an A4 piece of paper, split into four quadrants, top left being of top priority, then top right, then bottom left, then bottom right.

So my October 2013 list had the following categories:

1. Family        2. Job 1

3. Job 2         4. House

(You may already have spotted what is missing. That would be because you have much more sense than I did when I thought boozing was a grand idea.)

About a month into the sober challenge, I realised it. What was missing was ME. Where was I on that list? not even there. I had been leaving myself off my own list.

So, my December 2013 lists looked like this:

1. Family      2. Work

3. House      4. Me

Sometime in January, so maybe day 85, I had another look at that list. My needs had made it onto the list… but they deserved a higher place than at the bottom,  after the ironing… which let’s face it, never happens!

So my to do lists now look like this:

1. Family      2. Me

3. Work        4. House

I am satisfied with this format. The things on the ‘Family’ list tend to be immovable timetable commitments like ‘pick Tarquin up from fencing lesson’ (except not that, obv) and I don’t think I need to rank ‘me’ above those.

And ‘stay sober’ is the invisible header on every to-do list I write.

It’s my best thing.