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Jul 16, 2010


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It's a bizarre experience to read about other people's struggles that mirror exactly these of my own.

I am not as advanced as u r though. Used to try some sophisticated tools (i.e. TreeDBNotes) but it never worked. Currently using:

- general private todo list in the lightning add-on to Thunderbird
- few text files with a topic-specific todo lists
- one text file with work-specific todo list
- frequent and random notes on paper that I try (and often fail) to manage and order on a regular basis

A one very effective trick I use on a daily basis: in the morning I write down 5-7 things that I want to accomplish that day and cross them out as I progress. Useful, motivating and gives a lot of satisfaction.

U also have this wonderful sensation down your spine when you remove sth from the todo list as 'done'? Or should I consult a doctor? :>

Jakub Petrykowski

Funny: I am introducing the same morning to-do list routine that you described. I am not very consistent with it yet, but for the past few weeks I tried it and I am getting a lot done.

If I put this list on a computer, I give it the heading "Dayplan". It is intended for things that are not scheduled, and are thus prone to rolling over to the next day, which is exactly what I want to avoid.

I am using paper post-it notes more often though, and yes, I derive significant pleasure from crossing items off the list. This feeling is not as strong when doing it on a computer.

The reason I even started this routine was that if I have a day that's mostly free, it's all to easy to procrastinate and only do one of those things as an excuse to oneself.


I am a Post-it notes person! I write everything from errands to work project-related notes on them and derive immense satisfaction from crossing them out (occasionally with a bright red marker just for the heck of it) when a specific task is completed. I cannot do that if I write electronically, unless I print out the list. The downside about Post-its is that IF I lose them due to carelessness or ... a strong wind, I will not be a happy camper.

As for things that recur often enough (eg. going off on a trip to somewhere), I have drawn up a vacation planner word document for myself where I list down things I have to do/bring before going off on a trip somewhere: inform work supervisor, exchange foreign currency, bring passport/visa documents, carry numerous electronics aka camera, phone, laptop, plug adapter, respective chargers etc. - it's amazing how electronic devices occupy like 30% of your backpack these days and etc. This way, I do not even have to think what I might forget when I start filling up my suitcase each time.

Jakub Petrykowski

@Jo, how many post-it notes do you have on a typical day? :)

I did exact same thing for travelling - a document with typical list of things I take. Took me a few years to realize I always take pretty much the same stuff and I shouldn't reinvent it every time I got for a short trip :)

Same thing with all the personal electronics. Like Igor wrote, strange to see others have exact same problems and in this case even exact same solutions :)


I have 3 post-its (5"x3") on my work desk now, and 2 more at home. One of the latter post-its is to remind me what I have to buy from grocery store tomorrow. So it's an important one :o)

Re: vacation planner doc. Great minds think alike, hehe, took me quite a while to hunker down and itemize the things too - likely prompted by the inconveniences caused (and frustration that ensued) when I occasionally forget my cell phone charger, toothbrush etc.

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