Ta-Da List

Since this past weekend, I’ve been working on goal-setting and breaking big dreams down into achievable targets and tasks. My overall goals fall into these general categories: improve as a writer, improve my health, enrich myself/experience the world, and give back. Under these categories I have various broad targets, and under those targets I get more and more specific until I have drilled down to tasks. For example, under improve as a writer one of my targets is read consistently, and I have laid out some tasks for myself to help me get to the point where I am reading more. My first task is “create prioritized list of books.”

A lot of my initial steps have been the creation of some sort of list. And I have set up a spreadsheet that has a list of all my current tasks, Getting Things Done-style. But one list I haven’t quite figured out yet is my Ta-Da List.

Alongside having targets to reach, I want to have a place where I can look back and see all the things I have accomplished. I feel like this would be a great motivator. In the individual project tabs on my spreadsheet I do leave finished tasks in with their completed dates, but over time this will become infeasible–I’ll need to delete them just so I can keep the spreadsheet manageable. So I’m thinking I will need some sort of area to round up achievements. A daily report might be too hard to maintain, but perhaps weekly or monthly. I haven’t quite figured it out yet.

For now, I thought I’d list out here all the tasks I’ve done since I started this effort on Saturday.

Project Management

  • Wrote out a list of all the goals I’d like to work on
  • Created a spreadsheet to manage the goals
    • Features a main tab listing current tasks for all projects and then a tab for each project
    • On project tabs, automatically strikes out tasks for which I enter a completed date
    • On task tab, automatically turns items due that day orange and overdue items red
    • Note: I’d like to automatically pull tasks and due dates into the task tab from the project tabs, but I haven’t figured out how to do that, or if it’s even possible
  • Came up with tasks for each goal
  • Set due dates for each task
  • Next step: figure out how to do a ta-da list

Create a Writing Routine or System

  • Brainstormed milestones/targets
  • Next step: set a plan or schedule to test out for each target, or perhaps a combination of them

Travel More

  • Created a list of desired travel locations
    • Included driving time for close locations and flight cost for farther locations
  • Next step: continue pricing out each location (lodging, transit, activities) and then prioritize

Meal Planning

  • Created lists of easy-to-pack proteins, fruits, vegetables, and starches
  • Purchased supplies for a test run for the last three days of this week
  • Next steps: create a list of example meals so shopping is easier; purchase a single-serving set of dishes and flatware to keep at work

Exercise

  • Made a list of aerobic exercise options
  • Next step: make a plan/checklist for weekly aerobic exercise
  • Also, I walked for two hours on Sunday :D

Read MorePhotography, ExplorePolitics, and Volunteer

I have set tasks but I haven’t done anything on these projects yet.

  • Next steps: create prioritized list of books; finish editing and uploading Hawaii pictures; make lists of local gardens, museums, restaurants, hiking locations, and festivals; make a list of all my various representatives in government; make a list of local volunteer opportunities

One-Offs

I also used my spreadsheet to keep track of a couple errands I’d been putting off.

  • Paid medical bills
  • Shipped some packages

This is looking pretty impressive, and it’s only been four days. If I continue to complete tasks at a decent rate, I probably won’t be able to sustain doing a post like this every week. Or if I do, I will have to reformat so I can just copy and paste from my tabs. But this is a start!

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