Staying organized in a busy world can be a daunting task. This is why having a to do list is a good way to keep things in check. Today, we offer a couple of to do list ideas to help you better manage your time and achieve more with your days.
We don't stop there; we understand that keeping track of these daily, weekly, and monthly ideas could be tedious, so we've prepared a checklist of options to help you keep track of and prioritize your tasks.
Don't let your ideas overwhelm you. Let's get to planning better!
22 daily, weekly and monthly to do list ideas
Starting out your month without a plan is not the best way to live. It’s better to have a vague idea of what you aim to achieve each month than to have no idea at all.
We understand that having things to put on a to do list could be a hassle, especially if this is your first time attempting to plan out your month, week, or day properly. We do not intend to give you a step-by-step walkthrough plan for your months, weeks, and days, we are just offering a list of ideas that could do wonders for each day and drive you closer to your overall life goals.
No one can really plan your life better than you, but you might need some help or a boost in planning and generating ideas. These monthly, weekly, and daily to do list ideas can help shape your life to do list ideas better.
So what is a to do list, and what's the point in having a to-do-list plan? A to-do list is a list of tasks you need to do, simple. Look at your to-do-list plan as a plan to keep you organized and to help you track how you work and stay productive throughout the day, week, and month.
Daily to do list ideas
Sometimes, you wake up, and you feel unsure of what to get done in your day. Subconsciously, you know very well that how you start your day could determine the flow of the rest of your day. It might even affect your week, especially if it's a Monday (wink).
So you don't want to mess up how you begin your day. Luckily, here is a daily list of things to do to get started on your day, and give you a schedule to help you keep track of your progress through the day.
Note, we might not get everything you need to do and probably already have a fair idea of what you need to include in a simple daily to-do list, but here is a guide you can adopt.
1. Wake Up Early
A great to do list idea to start with is to plan the time you wake up. You can easily set an alarm for this. It might take some getting used to, but the rewards far outweigh the cost.
2. Exercise for 30 minutes
A light morning workout can help you stay in shape, boost your energy levels, give you positive feelings, and help you stay focused for most of the day. You could do a light jog or a set of easy full-body workouts.
3. Plan your meals
This is something easy to do to keep you from spending unnecessarily on junk food or impromptu buys.
4. Take a look at the plan for the day
By now you are fully up and have ticked some things off your day. Take a look at the remaining plans you have for the day and see if there is any rearrangement that needs to be made.
5. Complete your top priority task
After examining your ideas/tasks for the day, you know which one will drive you closer to your monthly goals. Do that first.
6. Check your emails
Checking your emails frequently is a good way to keep abreast of what's going on across the globe, but make sure it is not the first thing you do, as a single email can affect your mood for the rest of the day, so get something tangible done first.
7. Read for personal growth
Always block out time to get some reading done, no matter how short. Thirty minutes to one hour of reading a day stacks up to a lot of knowledge over time. You can post things you learn from what you've read to stay accountable. The more books you read, the more positive feedback you receive.
8. Take short breaks
As you go through your day, remember to take short breaks to ensure you remain productive for the rest of the day.
9. Unplug from screens before bed
Unplugging from any screen is a great way to get better sleep for the next day.
10. Set tomorrow's goals
After you have had your shower for the night, it's time to create your plan for the next day. Look through what you have achieved for the day, and plan towards the next.
Weekly to do list ideas
Now that we’ve sorted out your day, let's clean up your week with simple weekly things to do list. Keep in mind that the small things you do in your daily and weekly to-do lists help shape your life in the long run. That's exactly why we have these lists to help you make the best out of each time period.
Without a doubt, we have some things we do weekly already, but because we don't plan them, it's easy to miss them sometimes or to register how important they are. This weekly to do list should help you better track these activities and how important they are.
Let's get to the things to add to your to-do list.
1. Meal prep for the week
Meal prepping is a smart way to cut down on the cost of food. If you have a reliable storage system, you can easily prepare and store your meals for the week.
2. Review and update your budget
If you have prepared a budget for the month, you can have a weekly plan to review and update that budget.
3. Work on a long-term project
Your weekly plan is the best place to select what parts of your long-term project to work on and follow up on.
4. Attend a fitness class or workout
Exercising every morning is a good way to start, but if you are concerned about fitness, you can pick out a day within the week for workouts at a gym. These can be set for reminders depending on your mode of recording ideas
5. Clean one room in your house
Cleaning your home can be one of those inconvenient household chores, so a good weekly to-do list idea will be to clean one room per week.
6. Volunteer or do community service
Community service or a social societal activity has a lot of advantages, and it's a good idea to plan one into your week.
7. Plan social or family time
Beyond your plans, family is important, and they should be included in your weekly plan. Create the time to check in with family members or spend quality time with your kids every week.
Monthly to do list ideas
Planning your month could be a hard task, but it could also be easy. Usually, this should be the first thing to plan, as it helps inform the smaller details that will fill each day and week. You might have a list of things to do monthly already and not know it. For example, getting groceries could be a monthly purchase for you or having a certain appointment in certain months.
Our monthly task list is more of a way to stay conscious of the things you don't want to miss out on monthly.
1. Create a monthly budget
This does not rank as many people's favorite idea on their monthly planning checklist but is one we highly recommend. You need to keep track of what you earn and how you spend unless you have limitless funds. Having a monthly budget is one of the top 3 things you should do to gain control over your finances. We highly recommend it.
2. Fix a doctor's appointment
Health is wealth, as the saying goes, and we recommend you have a monthly appointment with your doctor if you can afford it. While planning your month, having a monthly check-up is amongst our top 3 ideas for you to keep your health in check.
3. Getting bulk supplies
When prepping for a new month, you should check how many supplies you have. You don't have to keep running to the store at the slightest inconvenience once you make a bulk purchase. This is applicable both for your business and your home. Reviewing this every month, you can easily identify what supply needs restocking and get them on fixed days within the month.
4. Learn a new skill or take a course
Have you been planning to learn a new skill? This is an idea you can easily fix into your monthly plan. You can break this into three: the overarching monthly plan, the weekly goals, and the daily steps to hit those goals.
5. Check and update your subscriptions
This is a fun task to do, right? It goes without saying that wisdom will have you checking on your subscription plans, so no unnecessary debits sneak up on you during the month.
Remember to have fun while generating your ideas. You can include more fun activities if you choose to, and if you are in search of an app to help with managing your to-do lists, we have a best to do list apps post that gives you options you can go for.
Where is the best place to keep your daily, weekly, and monthly checklist ideas?
Where you keep your daily, weekly, and monthly ideas could have a huge bearing on how well you tick off those ideas off your list.
For some, having it written on a piece of paper might be a start, but we doubt that will go far in the long run. And while having a piece of paper for an idea dump page is a good idea, afterward, you need something more sturdy and dependable when preparing for the future. We'll look at a couple of options you can use together.
A Simple Notebook
As we mentioned, having a piece of paper is not a bad idea for a short-term immediate dump, but a notebook is a step further into keeping track of your ideas and goals.
If you’re more predisposed to having your book in hand and taking active notes with a pen or pencil, this is the best place to keep your ideas. You have much more control over your planning and can determine what style you want to go with, which is great if you want your process to start from scratch.
A major drawback with a notebook is that you can’t always have it with you. It is easier to forget a notebook at home than to forget your mobile device, except if the notebook is quite small, then you will have the problem of space, as a smaller notebook means less space for your to-do list plans. You could decide to have two notebooks, one for your idea dump and structure.
You can easily add ideas to this, and it can serve as both your weekly and monthly planner and a smaller notebook for planning your days. Not only that, but you can tick off ideas as you accomplish them and add more ideas as they surface in your mind.
We live in a digital age, and a host of apps are made to attend to the problem of journaling or taking notes in general. These apps provide the flexibility of digital note-taking, allowing you to create, edit, and organize checklists effortlessly.
With digital apps, you can easily take notes for the month, week, and day all in the same place. You have so much leeway to edit how your notes will look and what structures you want.
Good note-taking apps even allow you to set reminders to check on a task within the month or the day. They might not be as customizable as paper notebooks, and you might miss the feeling of your hands on paper, but they offer you flexibility.
With cloud storage available on most note-taking apps, you can switch between devices to update your notes. A drawback with this option is power. If you run out of power on your devices, you might be stranded on what to do next on your to-do list, so we advise you to pair them lightly with another note-taking option, preferably a paper notebook.
Good examples include apps like Evernote, Microsoft OneNote, Google Keep, Todoist, and Asana.
Calendars, Digital or Physical
A calendar is a great way to visualize what you want to achieve within a fixed period. This calendar can either be physical or digital. With a physical calendar, you can hang it in a noticeable area of your house to more easily monitor important dates within the month or periods you have marked out for certain tasks, events, or ideas.
A digital calendar works that way, too, but with reminders. You can work with a calendar for the month, a week, or even for a day with a digital calendar and set reminders for various tasks within those periods, too.
Productivity Journals are just like notebooks, only more suited for journaling and planning out ideas. If you aren't too bothered about customizing your notebook to your style, productivity journals come with a host of templates and beautiful designs. You can even find a style you like.
Productivity journals are designed for those who crave structure in their daily, weekly, and monthly planning.
These journals typically include goal-setting, reflections, and habit-tracking sections. They're like personal trainers for your productivity, guiding you toward success step by step. Examples of this kind of planners includes the Happy Planner, Moleskine Planners, Ban.do etc.
You can also use sticky notes. Sticky notes are your go-to solution for quick, temporary reminders. Whether placed on your computer desktop or workspace, they're ideal for jotting down daily tasks that you want to keep in sight.
These little notes pack a punch to ensure you remember your crucial to-dos. They are the most minimalist approach to having a to-do list that is in your face.
Printable Monthly Checklist
Printable monthly checklists are an excellent option for those who value the best of both the digital and physical worlds. Find or build templates online, then fill them out digitally or by hand. Maintain them in your office as a regular visual reminder of your monthly priorities.
This is a species of digital note-taking apps that focus on certain areas. They include habit-tracking apps that can help you monitor your daily goals and watch how you perform on a daily basis. There are also apps you can use strictly for planning your finances for the month. The options in this category are numerous.
At the end of the day, you need to find what works best for you. You could even decide to use a task manager option, depending on your task type. You could start from a central system (maybe a paper notebook) and use other means to support it.
Prioritizing your daily, weekly and monthly tasks list
You won’t make much progress if you cannot organize your tasks according to their priorities. We will outline some steps that can help you do this effectively.
Do an idea dump the month before
What’s an idea dump? This is a process whereby you write out everything you want to achieve in the coming month, everything you want to do, get done, and tick off before the month ends. These ideas don’t have to be coherent yet; just get them all out.
This first step is crucial, so spend quality time pouring out those ideas, as they’ll help you better craft your key tasks for the month, weeks, and days to come. Your idea dump for the month should include anything and everything you can think of at the moment, whether actionable or not.
You can use a list to help better visualize what you need to get done.
When you finish this, you will be able to spot key goals and projects for the month.
Identify Your Most Important Tasks (MITs) Monthly
Now that you have all of these ideas out, begin to identify your Most Important Tasks (MITs) for the Month. These tasks have the highest impact on your goals or projects. You can now split these tasks into weeks and days.
Do you need to visit your mom later? You can plan when to put a call through first to check in and fix a convenient date. This process helps you to identify what to prioritize as you go through the month.
Rank Tasks by Urgency and Importance
Once you have your MITs, rank all other tasks on your daily to-do list based on their urgency and importance. Use the Eisenhower Matrix, which categorizes tasks into four quadrants:
Urgent and Important: These tasks need immediate attention and are crucial. Focus on them first.
Important but Not Urgent: These tasks are significant but can be scheduled for later. Allocate specific time slots for them in your day or week.
Urgent but Not Important: These tasks may be time-sensitive but don't contribute significantly to your long-term goals. Delegate or minimize these when possible.
Neither Urgent nor Important: These tasks are often time-wasters. Consider eliminating or postponing them.
You can use color codes to identify each one from their order of priority.
Set Daily Goals
Set clear daily goals based on your prioritized list. These goals should align with your MITs and critical tasks. By setting to do list ideas daily, you provide yourself with a clear direction for the day. You can easily tick off a chore or an appointment once you get to them for that day.
Set aside precise time for each job on your daily to-do list. Be realistic about how long each work will take, and try to keep to your timetable as much as possible. This ensures that vital tasks receive the attention they need.
Regularly Review and Adjust
Throughout the day, week, or month, periodically review your progress and adjust your priorities if needed. Unexpected events or new tasks may arise, so it's essential to remain flexible.
Don’t be scared of change, but strike a balance so that you are not too blown away from the plans you have set. Some plans simply should not change, like spending quality time with your family.
Reflect and Plan Ahead
At the end of the day, reflect on what you've accomplished and what needs to be carried over to the next day. Plan your daily priorities the evening before or early in the morning to start your day with clarity. This, too, should be done for your weekly and monthly plans.
Our conclusion on what to put on a to do list
We dare say we’ve given you more than enough things to think about. Now that you’ve got enough things to put on your to do list and you also know how to prioritize the more important stuff, what do you do next?
Simple, get to work on the actionable things on your list, start from the most basic like waking up early (we always advise that). And watch how these ideas gradually become normal habits for you.
If you have an entirely different list by the time you go through your things to do every month, that's fine too, as long as you can do your favorite things and your list does not become too overwhelming at the end of the day. This is even more important for those who work from home or are employers of labor.