written by amcvega on November 20th, 2006 @ 05:47 PM

People deal with a lot of things. Everyday, life make demands of us that sometimes just drive us crazy. But for some reason, We cannot escape it. It is ingrained in today’s society to handle many things at a time. in fact, productivity and efficiency have almost been synonymous with the ability to multitask.

I’m not going to write about doing less or simplifying life. Sometimes that’s just not possible. We want to make the best of everyday and so we have to tackle a lot of things. It’s the ability to do many things that make us such amazing beings.

Today’s little article is about lists. I’m a software developer and my life revolves around projects, feature requests, bugs, tasks, enhancements, and whatnot. You can begin to see that even my focused little nook of the world is riddled with its own barrage of todos and problems. It could literally drive programmers crazy. The only solution that I can think of is so simple that many don’t do it – make a list.

Lists are wonderful things.
  1. They remind you of the stuff you need to do.
  2. They keep you focused on the things you really need to be doing.
  3. They help set your priorities as you constantly reorder and reorganize them as new information arises.
  4. Last, and my favorite, it feels oh so good when you cross-off an item from your list.

The important thing is to keep it organized and up to date as new issues arise. If you don’t believe me, take it from a battle-hardened software guru .

I’ll stop yapping now, (I’ve got some stuff to do) but I’ll leave you with a great (and old) anecdote concerning this particular topic:

A man approached JP Morgan, held up an envelope, and said, “Sir, in my hand I hold a guaranteed formula for success, which I will gladly sell you for $25,000.” “Sir,” JP Morgan replied, “I do not know what is in the envelope, however if you show me, and I like it, I give you my word as a gentleman that I will pay you what you ask.” The man agreed to the terms, and handed over the envelope. JP Morgan opened it, and extracted a single sheet of paper. He gave it one look, a mere glance, then handed the piece of paper back to the gent. And paid him the agreed-upon $25,000.

The Paper:
  1. Every morning, write a list of the things that need to be done that day.
  2. Do them.

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