The folks at Freedom have a helpful tutorial about “how to be more productive in the afternoon.” The same principles, though, will apply also to the mornings or whenever one’s preferred time is for focused work.
Kristina Malsberger discusses managing oneself and one’s commitments amid what can be a hectic whirlwind of incoming information and requests. According to Malsberger,
there’s a simple, centuries-old solution: the daily to-do list. Sure, checklists have their detractors—folks that claim they constrain creativity or induce undue guilt—but when done well, a to-do list functions like a trusty aide-de-camp, greatly improving your ability to remember, plan, and prioritize.
Malsberger then provides several practical recommendations about using and managing to-do lists. Among these are not “treating your to-do list like a junk drawer for all your ideas, wishes, and reminders.” Instead, a someday-maybe list that’s regularly culled for dead wood is much more helpful.