Kudos to Michael Sampson on giving us a healthy reminder not to use our next action list as a project management system.
We’ve all done it: we’ve used our to-do lists to house everything we’ll need to finish a project. But this makes our lists increasingly bulky. And nobody likes looking at a long list of to-do’s on a Monday. Mike’s got an even better solution: only put actions on your project list that will get done within 1-2 weeks.
This naturally reduces the number of items on one’s next action list from an overwhelming number of hundreds and hundreds down to something that you feel good about getting done during the upcoming week. Things that you could do, or things that you might do in the future go someone else … on the project plan, in a tickler file, in your calendar … somewhere else where you will see them at the right time, but not on your next action list.
A smaller, more focused to-do list is always preferred. Just like most GTD mentality, only having what you immediately need in front of you is always the best path.