Post-it Driven Development

This is not a manifesto, just some observations and a technique that I use to work through some problems more efficiently.

Some times we’re in a rut, anxious or overwhelmed because we don’t really know what to do next. This anxiousness often turns into procrastination which as we all know is not very good for getting things done.

When I realize that I’m feeling like this, I turn to Post-it notes. There’s something about handling physical objects that makes my brain work differently.

I start by writing down every task from my to-do list down on Post-it notes.

The size constraint of a Post-it is a great way to ensure that your tasks are easy to tackle. If something is too big to describe on a Post-it, break it down in smaller chunks. While doing this exercise, it’s important to eliminate or identify sources of anxiety and unknowns.

Your notes will ideally be small enough that you can look at a Post-it, load everything you need to know about it in your head and complete it in less than an hour.

One could use use a whiteboard or a piece of paper but Post-it notes are a lot more flexible and easy to work with. You can re-organize them without having to rewrite anything - you just move them. When you’re done with a task, you have the satisfaction of throwing it in the trash.

Your canvas can be anything you want: a wall, your desk, a whiteboard, your monitor, etc. I often stick them to the bottom of my monitor or around other notes on my whiteboard.

This simple technique leads to huge increases in productivity for me. What works for you?

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