Iím one of those people who make "to do" lists on a clean piece of paper and ideally with an ink pen. Iím not sure why writing it in ink makes me feel better about it, I think it just shows a greater level of respect towards the things I need to do if the list itself is well written, instead of on the back of a Tesco receipt.
However some people have lists that they keep in their heads, others keep reminders on their phone and some have the reminders from their wife or boss! However you chose to stop your "to do"ís, Iím going to help you access the motivation you need to get on and do them.
Firstly Iíd like you to consider the following set of circumstances.
Not too long ago I had an event taking place in central London. It was one of our NLP events promoting our NLP training. I knew that when I got into London, I had a pretty substantial list of things to get on and do. It was a brand new NLP event and that meant a new set with NLP material and I was also co-hosting with someone and we hadnít had a change to run through the order of the day in advance. I wanted to make sure that I was really clear about certain sections of the day and Iíd been planning on sitting down and doing that for weeks. However a whole load of other important things had got in the way and now, here I was at the 11th hour finally getting the time to do it.
Iíd just got to my hotel room and was laying out the workbooks and materials for the next day on the double bed so that I could visually see it and decide which task to start with when the phone rang.
It was my assistant calling from the office back in Hertfordshire, to tell me that my dad had been rushed into hospital by ambulance with breathing problems.
My dad had had pneumonia a few months ago so whilst I was anxious, I wasnít too shocked. I phoned the hospital who said that they didnít have any information as the ambulance hadnít got back to the hospital yet. They asked me to call back in 15 minutes.
I realised that one of two things was about to happen, either the hospital would say "You need to get here" or not. If I needed to get there, that meant handing everything over to the co-trainer and heading back to Hertfordshire. My co-trainer isnít an NLP trainer so I wasnít too sure how that was going to work out, so I quickly wrote notes, as comprehensively as I could, which explained the plan for the day. In less than 15 minutes, I had the entire day organised!
I also knew the other option was that the hospital would say it wasnít going to be necessary for me to travel back and that they would keep me updated by phone, in which case Iíd just proved to myself that a) I could get organised super fast if necessary and b) The things that I had thought were a priority, suddenly were not.
If you have a "to do" list with tasks that never seem to reach the top, itís simply a case of making those things urgent and more important than anything else to get you motivated. Youíre never going to "make the time" because youíve only got the same amount of time each day, so youíre probably going to have to sacrifice something else to be able to do them. The something else might be something unnecessary that takes up loads of time, like checking emails which always takes longer than expected. Or it might be something that you like to do, such as having a cigarette break. Either way, something else is going to have to stop happening for your "to do" list to start happening.
By Gemma Bailey