Clever uses for plain text files that can increase your productivity

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Clever uses for plain text files that can increase your productivity

Belle Beth Cooper writes that we can use simple text files to write notes, make lists, and help us get things done. In the article, she talks about ten different types of text files to keep for yourself. Here’s a quick overview of the notes and lists she recommends keeping in text files.

  • A “Write Every Day” File
  • Manage Your To-Do List in Plain Text
  • Keep Track of What You’ve Accomplished with A “Done” List
  • Create an Action Plan for the Week
  • Keep a Plain Text Journal
  • Collect Your Ideas in a Brainstorming File
  • Track Your Own Data in a Self-Tracking File
  • Organize Your Feature Requests
  • Collect Tasks as Folders on Desktop
  • Decide on One Thing To Do Today

When it comes to keeping track of all your text and to-do lists, there’s no shortage of apps to choose from, but sometimes the ease and simplicity of working with plain text files can actually be more productive. Here are ten clever plain text files that you might want to keep on hand.

Keep Track of What You’ve Accomplished with A “Done” List

There’s something to be said for seeing how much you’ve gotten done at the end of the day. You know how satisfying it is to cross out items on your to do list, and then look back at the list to see everything you completed? A “done” list, or “anti-to-do list” as Marc Andreessen calls it, works in a similar fashion: you simply take note of each thing you get done during the day.

Start out with the date and just list your “done” items underneath. Not only will this help you review your productivity at the end of each day and make you feel better about what you got done, but it can be really useful to keep around as a work log. You might want to look back in weeks or months to come to see what you were working on or how long a project took to complete.