Due Dates Are Dumb. Why You Should Manage Your Week Instead

Ev Chapman
August 30, 2021
1 min read

Due dates are useless for most people. I haven't set a due date for a task in years.

I work in the context of weeks. Most of my tasks can be done within that date range. We set due dates because task managers make us. But this means we either make up an imaginary date & procrastinate because we know it's not really due. Or we totally leave it to the last possible day and end up trying to cram it in at the last minute.

Either way, due dates are a waste of time. Here's how I manage week tasks instead:

  • The Inbox: All new tasks that are not tagged as 'Up Next' or have a scheduled day go into the inbox.
  • Up Next Pile: On Mondays, I go through the inbox and tag any tasks that I want or need to do that week as 'Up Next'.
  • The Weekly Task Board: Once I have a full 'Up Next' list I assign a day of the week to each. I like viewing my tasks in a weekly context cause I can balance the number of tasks each day.
  • Three extra lists sit on my weekly page:
  • Waiting: I tag anything I'm waiting on as 'waiting' and scan it every few days for follow-ups.
  • To Delegate: Anything I need to delegate to my team gets tagged 'delegate.' Once I've handed it off I'll move it to waiting so I can close the loop.
  • Tickler: OK, so some tasks do need to be looked at on certain dates. So I add a tickler date to these and they show up in context on that specific date.

Untangle yourself from the due date mentality and give weekly planning a go.

Liked thIS? Then You Might Like My SPARK Newsletter...

The ✨ Spark Newsletter:
‍Turn Your Personal Knowledge Into Powerful Ideas & Increase Your Income, Opportunities & Authority.

Join 1200+ readers of The Spark Newsletter each Sunday learning how to leverage personal knowledge into powerful ideas.
Or Keep Browsing More Posts Like This...

The Simple Task Method I Used To Eliminate Procrastination For Good.

They say it takes about 20 minutes to refocus every time you switch tasks.I don’t know about you, but I don’t have 20 minutes to waste every time I switch between the tasks on my list. My time is limited. So I created a way to skip that 20 minute hazy moment where you’re faffing around…
Read post

How to Stop Being the Bottleneck in Your Team’s Progress

The life-changing method I created to manage work that was waiting on me, get back to people faster, and create more space to do my best work.
Read post

Master Your Schedule with My 10-Minute Weekly Planning Process (using Tana)

My foolproof weekly planning routine that takes me about 10 minutes every week and keeps me organised across my work, my creator business & my whole life.
Read post

How To Make Steady Progress On Your Big Creative Projects

Lately I’ve been struggling with my process for getting big creative projects done. They feel like they are taking forever to finish. Each step feels big so I put it off thinking I need a bigger chunk of time to deal with it.
Read post

An Essay About Boring SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures)

I am a master procrastinator. Not because I don't know what I should do or because I'm not motivated - but because most of the time I just don't have the headspace to get stuff done.
Read post

What Goal Setting Looks Like For Infinite Game Players

I was listening to an Instagram reel the other day from Sahil Bloom talking about finite v infinite games. If you're not familiar with the concept...
Read post