Do you make lists?

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I read an interesting article about Jack Dorsey’s, founder of Twitter and CEO of Square appearance at a recent event. Did you know that Jack is a huge fan of lists and note-taking? Here is an excerpt from the article:

…the most fascinating bit might be Dorsey’s own use of lists. He told the crowd that he creates notes for each person he meets, building detailed lists of important things that come from meetings with them, or that he’d like to relay to get things done. He also has a “Do” and “Don’t” list that he takes a look at daily.

Jack Dorsey’s daily To-Do List

  • Stay present
  • Be vulnerable
  • Drink only lemon water and red wine
  • Six sets of 20 squats and push-ups every day
  • Run for 3 miles
  • Meditate on this list
  • Stand up straight
  • Spend 10 minutes with a heavy bag
  • Say hello to everyone
  • Get 7 hours of sleep

And the “Don’ts”:

  • Don’t avoid eye contact
  • Don’t be late
  • Don’t set expectations that you can’t meet
  • Don’t eat sugar
  • Don’t drink hard liquor or beer during the weekday

I love to make lists because I have a terrible memory, and need notes like “Do laundry” and “Run report” to remember that those things need to be done. I also feel uncomfortable when something is not done, so once an item is added to the list, I never fail to do it.

But, I never thought about making lists for life-enhancing actions such as “Say hello to everyone” and “Get 7 hours of sleep”. I didn’t think I needed daily reminders to do those, but honestly, it is easy to shrug off the necessity of getting 7 hours of sleep when it is past midnight and there is still work or studying to be done. Jack Dorsey’s method has totally turned my world upside down. What could happen if I started including items like “Stand up straight” and “Don’t set expectations that you can’t meet” on my list? Will I actually do those things?

Here is my list for tomorrow. Wish me luck!!

  • Get 8 hours of sleep
  • Be kind
  • Do some kind of workout
  • Think about how great life is
  • Think about life goals
  • Stand up straight
  • Say hello to everyone
  • Eat 5 servings of vegetables
  • Eat less ice cream. And brownies and cookies. And cake.
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