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15 minutes for an easier day

Today’s tip: Knock off lingering tasks with a one-round to-do list deathmatch.

One of the problems with a to-do list is it makes all your tasks seem equally as important and time-consuming. But they’re not. In fact, there are probably plenty of tasks that you’ve just sort of parked there — small things you don’t feel like doing. For those tasks, the to-do list itself is a means of procrastination.

Here’s an approach to eliminate a lot of those lingering small to-dos: Set a timer for 15 minutes and then get after it. See what you can cross off. “Follow up” with that person you need to get back to. “Circle back” on that project you’ve lost interest in but have to address. “Think about” this or that or the other thing.

That’s it. You’ll get a lot done in very little time, and you’ll free up mental space to focus on the more complex tasks that are left.

📚 More from Forge on getting things done:

Move Tasks From Your To Do List to an “I Did” List

A New Way to Schedule Your Work Week

A Better To-Do List, According to a Scrum Master

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