Business Productivity

How I master my to-do list in just 5 minutes

- July 12, 2016 2 MIN READ

If you’re anything like me, your greatest business challenge is keeping up with everything coming your way. We are all being inundated, on every level, with communication, tasks, ‘stuff’, more, more … and then even more.

How on earth do we stay sane in amongst this?

Well, sadly, most of us aren’t! We’re so overwhelmed by our to-do list it seems like more of a hindrance than a help.

Over the years I taught myself a productivity technique that on the surface seems ridiculously simple, and it is, yet it’s helped me achieve a huge amount of things on a daily basis. I get asked all the time how do I get so much done. Well, this is the answer.

I’ve become incredibly good at using five-minute windows of opportunity.

Throughout my day, I have two lists of things to do:

  • A to-do list of those that will take some time.
  • A to-do list of those that will only take a minute or two.

When I get a spare five minutes, perhaps waiting for a call or a meeting to start, I pull out the to-do list and complete a few of the ‘minute or two’ tasks.

Over the course of the day, I can get literally a hundred or more little tasks done from my to-do list in those five-minute windows. (Windows which I would otherwise waste by checking Facebook, watching kitten videos or picking fluff out of my belly button.)

I feel so good at the end of the day when I see the big long list of things  from my to-do list I have achieved. Some of them might be standalone tasks, like ‘Send someone a thank you email’, or they might be part of a bigger project that I have chunked down into five minute or less, bite-sized tasks.

I know how simplistic this concept may sound, but I guarantee if you master the art of using those five-minute windows of time really well, you’ll be amazed at how much you get done on your to-do list and how wonderfully productive you feel, and actually are, as a result.