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Simple act of writing down tasks in the book helps to keep you organized


There would always be the latest technology gadget and software out in the market that have all kinds of functions including helping us to record our tasks and set reminders. These features would be useful provided we find use for them.

If we cannot afford to invest in technology or an expensive planner, a simple notebook or a Diary would do just fine. In fact, it can be even more effective.

Previously I used Microsoft Outlook to help me organise my task but after a while, I find the blinking reminders too annoying. In the end, I switched back to just the simple act of writing down tasks at hand.

I have 2 books that I use:
a. A simple small notebook for personal use- I would buy the RM5 inexpensive by cute books from Hinode. And then I would jot down my tasks, blog ideas in the book. After I’ve typed out the post, I would cross out those that I’ve done.  Because I would put the book in whichever bag that I carry, I need not write down bits of information on pieces of paper that would eventually go missing when I need them. It is all in the book and once it has been dealt with, I would cross it out.

b. A diary for work use- the diary comes with the dates- I list down my to-do list in the diary. After listing it down, I can just forget about them and they do not take up excessive mental baggage in my mind. You would be surprised that once you get into the habit of writing down everything in a book, you would feel much lighter. All you need is to have the discipline to consistently refer back to your book.

If there are tasks that can wait- I usually write them down on Sat/Sun dates on the diary. If it gets too long, I would shift the task to a future date and cross old the old records. Just the simple act had keep me much more organised (I am also grateful for colleagues who would remind me to do certain tasks that I have overlooked- hectic and fast moving workplace I am working in…)

Simple system used by my mom

Whereas for my mom, she uses a even more simple but effective system. She does not have a diary or notebook. All she does is to write down her grocery shopping list on a piece of old grocery resit and put in her purse where she keeps her cash. That way, when she dig into her purse for cash, she would see that paper.

Previously when she was working, she would stop by the market on her way back from work to buy fish, meat and vegetables to cook. Once, she had forgotten to buy fish- and knowing her memory may not be able to serve her 100%, she would write what she had to buy on a piece of paper and put in her uniform pocket where she put her loose bus change. When she go back, she would need to dig into her pocket for the bus change and the moment her fingers touched the paper, she would remember she had to stop by the market to buy whatever required items.

My mom’s simple system has served her for decades.

Therefore, it is not necessary to complicate ourselves over things. Find a system that works for us and that we are comfortable with and stick to it. Sometimes, the more sophisticated it is, the more we have the discipline and problem maintaining it.

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