10 Things I Am Not Going to Do Today

Today’s checklist is inspired by “10 Things To Stop Doing Now… To Get More Done!

Here are 10 things that I am not going to do today…

10 Things Not To Do Today

  1. Second Guess Decisions – Few decisions cannot be changed later if needed. Better to take action that wallow in inaction.
  2. Waste Time at the Proverbial Water-cooler – Some people waste a large percentage of their day “chatting it up” in the workplace. Instead, get your work done, and get out.
  3. Check Email 50 Times – I love it when someone asks, “Did you get my email?” Um, when did you send it? “Like 10 minutes ago.” No. No, I didn’t. Check email periodically when it makes sense in your schedule. And turn off those new mail dings and notifications.
  4. Answer the Phone – I won’t answer the phone while in the middle of something, meeting with someone else, or especially if I don’t know who is calling.
  5. Wait For the Perfect Plan – A good plan now, always beats a perfect plan next week. Circumstances are never going to be perfect. Don’t wait. (See #1)
  6. Attend Unnecessary Meetings – Meetings are the single biggest time-waster in the workplace. Practice the “right to decline” when you do not need to be in attendance.
  7. Work During Meetings – I will check my tech at the door during meetings. No open laptops. No phones or tablets. And no, you can’t work during my meeting either.
  8. Put If Off – When it comes to the tasks I don’t want to do, I will adopt a “Just Do It Now” attitude. Do those unsavory tasks early in the day and get them out-of-the-way.
  9. Take On Unnecessary Tasks – I will say “No” where appropriate to tasks that are outside my domain. After all, you can’t get your work done if you are doing everyone else’s job.
  10. Start Before I Finish – I will complete tasks to done, before starting new ones. Better to have finished the few important ones, that to have started lots of little ones.

Question: What’s on your “not to do” list today?

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25 thoughts on “10 Things I Am Not Going to Do Today

  1. It almost seems wasteful of your valuable time to do this, but the idea of it made me laugh. Then, I thought a little harder, and it made so much sense that I plan to do it – or at least think it out, every single day. Thank you Craig, for another great tip!

  2. @jasonnmark How many times a day are you checking email? I’ve been playing with different amounts, all MUCH better than push notifications.

  3. This post made me laugh but you’re absolutely right! I probably need to read this list at the start of each workday so I can stop wasting time. I know I’ll be far more productive starting right now, so thanks for reminding me of what NOT to do.

  4. Craig,

    Asking this question is a very powerful one – you can cut all the extra busyness off your day this way.

    This is like a technique that I learned in a book “Finding Your Focus Zone” – “What am I not doing now?”.

    On my “no” list today … for example that I don’t talk bad about people behind their backs or that I won’t assume anything (I’m not taking action based on assumptions)

  5. @littlerainmaker no worries Melinda Craig’s blog @TMNinja is absolutely fantastic, glad you found it! 🙂    – Leo

  6. I like most of these ideas, but I’m still struggling with the one about email. A lot of time management and productivity “experts” recommend checking your email only two or three (or whatever) times a day, but my clients (I’m a real estate lawyer) expect me to respond to their emails promptly (meaning immediately). Ironically, the time when I’m busiest — when I have one or more closings underway — is the time when emails fly and must be responded to. Not technically a time-waster for me, since answering the questions in those emails is part of my job, but certainly a distraction when I’m simultaneously drafting or reviewing documents or in a meeting that requires my presence. I guess my point is that even the best conceptual tips won’t work for every situation.

    • @LauraMcMom Laura, I agree with you. If your business is via email, then by all means you have to stay on top of it. Especially, if that is your main communication line with your customers.