Does brain activity cause you sleeping problems? Are you slow getting tasks underway in the morning? Do important issues frequently get overlooked? Well, these and other such stresses happen to me and I believe I’ve found a cure.
First, it seems to me that brain “clutter” is the root problem, which is unavoidable in modern-day living. For me, the solution is to focus on one thing at a time. “Multi-tasking” may be do-able, but I’ve never seen it done truly well, and “haste makes waste” in the form of issues handled poorly, or overlooked entirely.
So, how to get rid of brain clutter? “Flush” it by making a list!
10 minutes! Every evening! At the point where you can most easily fit the habit into your routine.
Not long before going to bed, I take a pen and paper, set the timer on my smartphone, and start writing a to-do list, for next day, as well more distant tasks not previously scheduled, and including items that can be delegated to others. I don’t worry about spelling, etc. – I just write … more like scribble, just so I can read it later.
At first, I worried about a complete, perfect list and spent so much time that this was more of a problem than a solution. So, I imposed the 10-minute limit. Initially, the 10-minute list was very imperfect, but I stopped anyway! Fairly soon, I developed the skill to get a satisfactory list completed.
To assist the flush: I first review my calendar; I think in terms of categories … projects underway, upcoming deadlines, family issues, around the house, medical, hobbies, etc.; and, of course, I consider the prior-day list.
After-Flush … 5 minutes! I (1) rewrite the flush-list in priority order, (2) put items to be delegated to others in a separate list, and (3) put future tasks into the calendar … the better the calendar has become, the easier and faster flush-list writing has become.
A daily “flush” has definitely helped me to focus on what matters, get prepared for next day, and goes a long way toward helping me to relax and sleep better.