‘Making a List and Checking it Twice’ — ‘Tis the Season to Prioritize
As a consulting company, we are very big on making lists. In the spirit of the season, I thought I would borrow a quote from the fictitious character Saint Nicholas for this blog titled, “making a list and checking it twice.”
Baby Steps Lists (Inspired by my babies)
I learned very early in parenthood, that lists are my friends. When the kids were babies, my lists were used to remember diaper changes and feeding schedules, etc, etc. One day as I was watching my youngest learn to walk, I noticed something. At first she would get up and take off. This method didn’t last very long because she kept falling. It didn’t take her long to realize she had to slow down and take her time. This was a lesson learned for Mommy and daughter. At that moment I gave birth to a new concept for my family — Baby Steps Lists. Start slow to go/grow fast. These are a series of tasks, broken down and divided up daily for a week.
Note: My youngest is now the fastest sprinter in her second grade class.
Whether you are raising two children ten months a part or starting your own business, you have to prioritize and make small to-do lists out of your long tumultuous tasks.
You can use roman numerals, check marks, bullet points, or post-it notes strategically stuck to your mirror. Lists are imperative to the progress of any goal/task.
By portioning weekly lists into smaller daily tasks, you can manage chores more effectively without getting burnt out. This is also a good way to manage stress. If you become a bit overzealous and try to take on too much at one time, refer back to your list to remind yourself “baby-steps”.
Below is an example of my Week One: Building My Brand list. My weekly task list looked like this:
- Create a name for your business
- Meet with marketing team to develop marketing concepts
- Secure a domain name and URL
- Work with 3 different graphic artists for logo
- Select a graphic designer
I only selected five tasks for the week. One for each day of the week, Monday – Friday (weekends are sacred — reserved for family). Note: An advantage of being On My Own and out of the Rat Race — I get my weekends back!!
Now if you’re like the pre-list me, you’re probably thinking, “that’s a short list, I’ll finish that in one day. Remember, this is a Baby Steps List. Each weekly task is the subject for your day. For each daily subject, make hourly subtopics.
Day 1: Create a name for your business
8:00 am — Wake up, make coffee, eat breakfast, brush teeth
9:00 am –Check email
10:00 am — Review and research trademarks etc, etc,
If you get finished early for the day, great! Read a motivational book, volunteer, plant a garden, join a yoga class, or just relax and plan out Day Two’s Baby Steps List. The point is ONLY DO DAY ONE’S TASK.