Today I learned of a simple productivity technique called the Ivy Lee method, created in 2018 but still relevant.
- At the end of each work day, write down the six most important things you need to accomplish tomorrow. Do not write down more than six tasks.
- Prioritize those six items in order of their true importance.
- When you arrive tomorrow, concentrate only on the first task. Work until the first task is finished before moving on to the second task.
- Approach the rest of your list in the same fashion. At the end of the day, move any unfinished items to a new list of six tasks for the following day.
- Repeat this process every working day.
There’s an app that makes this easier, appropriately named Ivy. I really appreciate the retrospective graphs. A few months ago I started using a simpler productivity system - weekly planning and retrospectives. For the latter, I look at what I accomplished vs. what I committed to. Retrospectives highlight my mistakes, which I try to avoid in my next round of planning.