How to Use a To-Do List to Be a More Productive Blogger

By: | November 15, 2016 | Tags: , , , , , |

As a blogger, you need to use a to-do list to stay organized

Do you have a to-do list?

Maybe you have a honey-do list.

A to-do list is a list of tasks you intend to accomplish.

A honey-do list is a list of tasks your significant other wants you to accomplish.

As a blogger, you must have many tasks that need completion since being a blogger is so time-consuming.

I have a to-do list. As a matter of fact, I have many.

I have to-do lists on my iPhone in the Notes app, the Pages app, my Evernote app, and on my Wunderlist app. Also, I keep to-do lists each day in my Google Calendar. I also keep to-do lists on paper on my laptop, so I will see them when I blog.

In addition, I have tasks that need completing on the honey-do list I give my husband.

Today’s guest, Mickey Ann, offers six tips for managing your to-do lists.

Since she has completed research in the area of time management, she is well qualified to write about productivity tips for bloggers.

Fair warning: Tip 3 is a shocker.

Mickey Ann is beyond busy. Career counseling, ghostwriter, novelist, and blogger are a few of the many activities that keep her occupied. She definitely finds time to blog and do it all.

Here she presents her tips for using the to-do list to manage your time better.

Rethinking the To-Do List

I’ve always wanted to write.  When I recently moved from thinking about it to doing it, one of the first things I did was research hacks about finding time, making time, buying time, stopping time, and creating time to write.  


When I was a practicing attorney, time was a commodity that could be monetarily valued to six-minute increments. Since transitioning into full-time work as a career counseling, I still think of time as having a monetary value.  


In addition to having a full-time job, I am a freelance ghostwriter and blogger and am currently finishing up my first novel, Gods Behaving Badly (Book One). These are the things I truly enjoy doing.


Unfortunately, the time I have to devote to them can be quantified in aggregate minutes rather than continuous minutes.  Therefore, making the most of these “free times” during the day requires a lot of discipline.  After much trial and error, I have found what helps me to not only make the most of these valuable moments but to truly enjoy them, is rethinking the to-do-list.


Make To-Do-Lists in the Morning

I used to make my to-do lists the night before as one of the last things I did before leaving the office. What I realized was that I was creating undue anxiety knowing that I already had a full day’s worth of tasks ready for me the following morning.  Moreover, inevitably, there was always something that occurred in the morning that required either adding something new to the top of the list or moving something from lower on the list to the top.  I have reduced my anxiety significantly by making my to-do-list in the morning.


Make Your To-Do-Lists the Old-Fashioned Way.

We all make them.  Some do so on a computer, some do so the old-fashioned way.  I prefer the old-fashioned way because there is nothing more satisfying than dragging a pen or pencil across the paper to strike out an item on my list.  At the end of the day, I look back at all the strikethroughs and marvel at what I’ve accomplished.


Go Ahead.  Tear Up the To-Do-List!

I always make a complete list of everything I want to do and everything I need to do. Then, I tear that list in half!  I find that the longer the list is, the more daunting it is to get started.  Whereas, if the list is more manageable, how wonderful is it when I can get through that list and add a few items to it.


Try the Post-It To-Do-List Approach

The half-list as I’ve described above works for me more often than not.  Occasionally, however, I feel like even half of a list is too much. On the rare occasion that happens, I grab a post-it and fit as much as I can on that post-it in my normal size writing.  I then toss out the post-it when I’m done and make another. 


Make Your To-Do-List Work for You

When I sit down to make my list, I try to do so with a clear head.  I sit down and immediately write whatever comes to mind and in the order in which they pop into my head.  I often find that the order in which they pop into my head is the order in which I’m actually motivated to complete the list.  As a result, I often get through the list much quicker so I can keep adding to it throughout the day.


Take a Bottom-up Approach to the List

When I find I am still lacking the motivation to complete my list in the order in which I have written it, I try to shake things up. I start from the bottom or in the middle.  Usually, before I know it, I’ve crossed out a good number of items on my list! 


I would love to hear from you about what works for you!


Mickey Ann

Host Blogger’s Commentary:

Whether or not you are a blogger, there are tips here for you.

Sometimes you have to come up with unusual solutions for problems.

Mickey Ann solves the problem of being inundated with too many tasks by suggesting you consider the to-do list a blogging tool to keep you focused. The post explained 6 ways to be more focused and therefore more productive by using the to-do list.

Mickey Ann definitely sounds organized as well as knowledgeable.

People are busier than ever before. Please share, so everyone can get the benefit of Mickey Ann’s tips.

Are you a busy blogger? (Aren’t we all?) What productivity tips do you follow? I look forward to your views in the comments section.

Would you like more free blogging tools?

Click here to get your own downloadable PDF of my free blogging tools list.

Related Posts:

How to Blog and Still Have Time to Sleep Part II

19 Strange Ideas That Will Amplify Your Productivity

  1. Mickey Ann


    Thanks for this opportunity to guest blog! I’ve found great tips following your blog and I hope readers find a few of my tips helpful as well. Happy blogging everyone!

    Mickey Ann

    • Janice Wald

      Hey Mickey Ann,
      It was my pleasure to host you. You did a great job, as these comments and social shares attest. Thank you for being our guest.

    • Janice Wald

      I couldn’t agree more John! Do you use to do lists outside of blogging?

  2. Janice Wald

    Thank you for being our guest this week, Mickey Ann. It was our pleasure to host you.

  3. Jennifer Dunham

    These are great tips! I use a weekly to-do list of things to get done as well as a daily list of what I want to accomplish in a specific day.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Jennifer,
      Thank you for commenting on my article. That’s a great idea– 2 to-do lists– daily and weekly. Thanks for suggesting it.

  4. 1010ParkPlace

    I write mine, by hand, the night before and just don’t sweat the rest. Brenda

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Brenda,
      Nice to hear from you? How are you doing? I do that as well and leave it on my laptop. The Pinterest pinning usually gets pushed aside until I know my pin scheduler is out of pins even if it’s on my to-do list, =).

  5. Lisa Sicard

    Hi Mickey Ann and Janice, I love writing the list down too. It takes the stress out if me to have it written so I don’t have to keep thinking about it. I try to do the least fun things in my list first, saving the best for last approach.
    I need to do more of it for my blogging though. Thanks for the tips and reminders.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Lisa,
      Thanks for the visit and the comments. Our pleasure. I like the best for last approach. Thanks for suggesting it.

  6. Clay

    Hi there Janice,

    You are really doing well with your blog, I congratulate you. Of course this post is awesome, and that’s why I decided to comment here.


    Clay Smith

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Clay,
      I am continuing to apply your SEO tips to my blog. When I blog about SEO tips again I will link to you.
      Thanks for your compliments on my guest author’s to-do-list post.

  7. Reuven

    Hi, Janice. So glad you linked up with me at the #TrafficJamWeekend linky party. It’s great to see you there with your helpful posts. No matter what you share, I ALWAYS learn something and that’s a great compliment to you. You really invest yourself in delivery quality information and ideas that help your readers. ?

    To-do lists are so important; I couldn’t manage without one. I agree that it’s a good idea to prepare one while you’re clearheaded and I always get mine ready the night before, usually when I’m closing up ‘shop’ for the day. That way, the next morning, I already know what I want to get accomplished and can jump right in.

    I love your tip about mixing up the order when you start losing steam or focus. I regularly do this, sometimes mixing in something easy to get a boost in my sense of accomplishment before tackling something bigger.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Reuven,
      You mentioned Traffic Jam Weekend in your comments. I am SO sorry I didn’t go yesterday. It was Thanksgiving in the U.S. I didn’t even go to my own bloggers’ linky party.

  8. Cathy Lawdanski

    I am such a list keeper to. I’ve tried all the apps & techniques. Pen & Paper still work the best for me!

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Cathy,
      Thanks for writing. Great to hear from you. I see on Facebook your group is going well. I’m glad.
      As I explained in my post, I use them all– traditional paper and pencil and tech! I use red ink, blue ink, pencil– I have to-do lists everywhere!

  9. Janet Vinyard

    Hi Janice, Thanks for the great tips! I’ve always kept a “To Do” list! Blessings, Janet

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Janet,
      Is nice to meet you in order? If so, nice to meet you!
      I’m happy you liked the To Do List article. I’ve been keeping dual– on my phone and on paper.
      Thanks for writing.

    • Janice Wald

      Hi Wendy,
      I agree. But, write them down where? I have them in both my phone and on paper. Thanks for writing. Glad you enjoyed the article.

  10. Patty

    Automatic reminders for link parties have been a lifesaver. I always forget to sign up and I forget to comment! An electronic reminder works best for me.

    • Janice Wald

      Thank you for clicking my link at the Linky party. I would love an automatic reminder for Linkee parties. What do you use? I have never heard of that. What do you recommend? I forget to go as well.

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