Crush your goals with this 5-task to-do list

by Steli Efti

When was the last time you completed your daily to-do list?

A mere 11% of professionals worldwide say they accomplish everything on their to-do list by the end of the workday.

Not a great looking number.

It seems like the more successful we become, the longer our lists grow. Eventually, they become so unmanageable that it feels like we spend more time adding tasks than completing them.

Let’s change that.

Have less to do, get more done

Reality check: A long to-do list isn’t the mark of a productive person. It’s the mark of an unfocused one.

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Focus is the fuel your startup needs to succeed, but it’s a limited resource. You only have so much to give, so invest it wisely.

That 100-task to-do list? It’s not only unwise, it’s impossible. By the time you finish those 100 items, 200 more will take their place.

It’s time for a new system: a to-do list that can actually be done. Here’s how to use the power of prioritization to regain focus, take back control, do less, and accomplish more.

Your new 3-step, 5-task to-do list

Step one: Create a 25-task to-do list. For most people, the problem won’t be finding 25 tasks. It’ll be limiting it to 25.

Step two: Circle the 5 most important tasks on the list. In this case, “most important” either means urgent, or exceptionally high ROI.

Step three: Separate and date the circled items. Your five circled tasks are now your to-do list, and the twenty left uncircled are your reserve.

Now here’s the catch: You can’t add new items to your list until you’ve completed all five tasks. This creates forward momentum that becomes more productive with each completed job.

Once you’ve finished all five items, add any new tasks to your reserve and repeat the cycle: choose your top five, separate the lists, and start crushing it.

Commit to productivity

The idea of “doing less” will be hard for some people to accept at first. If that’s you, ask yourself: “Would I rather complete 100 half-assed tasks each month, or totally crush five?”

If you’re hesitant, commit to this new system for 30 days and measure your results. By the end of the month, you won’t even dream of going back. Trust us.

Want to take your new to-do list to the next level? Make it public and have your team hold you accountable.

Let them watch you crush it.

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