Your task list is probably pretty big. So it helps if it’s not confusing to look at.
If you want an easier life…
Give your tasks a name that will make sense to other people and your future self.
This will save you countless headaches and help to overcome inertia, making it easier to get started.
As a general rule, task names should be:
It’s also helpful to:
- Start with a verb
- Use sentence case
Here’s an example
“Spreadsheet” is a terrible task name (busted!!)
Add a verb…
“Do the spreadsheet”
Not clear enough. Build it? Find it? Fill it out? What?…
“Complete the spreadsheet”
Not specific enough! … Which spreadsheet?
“Complete the financial projections spreadsheet”
Getting better. How about some context?
“Complete the financial projections spreadsheet for Bob in Accounts so that he can finalise the full report for the marketing department in Q1.”
Whoa now… way too long! Keep it short!
“Complete the Financial Projections Spreadsheet for Bob’s Q1 Marketing Report”
Better… but this is still a little difficult to read Due To The Capitalisation In Every Word. Not Only Is This Much Harder To Type, It’s Also Harder To Read!
Instead, use sentence case.
“Complete the financial projections spreadsheet for Bob’s Q1 marketing report”
Now it is clear, specific, short and contextual. It’s also easier to read (sentence case) and get started (verb).
It might seem inconsequential, but every little helps. Habitually removing such small but confusing obstacles can have a considerable effect over time. Beating laziness and naming tasks correctly is one of these things.
It also means if you’re sick, out-of-office or, heck, if you win the lottery and leave… somebody else can pick it up and understand it.
Don’t worry, it comes with practice. And it just takes a few extra seconds of thought when you’re adding in tasks.
Give it a go!