Why Checking Things Off Your List Feels So Good

Keeping Score with Your Todo List

Check it off your list

Have you ever added a task to your todo list… after you had just completed it?

Why do you do this?

So you can cross it off your list, of course!

Just Mark it Done

Whether you “check them off,” “X them,” or even “draw a line through them,” the effect is the same… it feels great to cross things off your todo list.

That little checkmark gives you a sense of accomplishment.

Crossing something off your list motivates you.

It could be a sense of pride in a job well-done. Other times it might be the relief of finally completing that task which is long past due.

The bottom line is that completing items on your list feels good. (So much so, that you will often add a completed task to your list, just so you can check it off.)

It is interesting that paper-based todo lists are still preferred by many people simply because the feeling of physically crossing something off their list is so enjoyable. Much more so than the simple “tick” one gets from completing a task in a todo app. (App makers take note…)

There is a certain joy in X’ing out a todo with a pen. Or drawing a hard and definite line (or many) through it!

Keeping Score with Your Todo List

Go ahead, add that task to your list just so you can check it off.

Keep score with your list and you just might get a few more tasks done.

In fact, let it motivate you to draw a few more lines through your todos today.

Question: Do you ever add things to your list just to check them off? You can leave a comment by clicking here.

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20 thoughts on “Why Checking Things Off Your List Feels So Good

  1. This is so true! And yes, I do regularly put stuff on my to do list after I’ve done it already, only so I can check it off 🙂 I read that brain research shows that your brain actually releases dopamine when you do that, fueling a sense of accomplishment and happiness. Works for me!

  2. every day i check your site just to see if you posted something new
    i love your writing
    it helps me a lot ( i an not from usa so sorry for my english )