Not To-Do List

Michael Hyatt is the Chairman (formerly Chairman and CEO) of Thomas Nelson Publishers, the largest Christian publishing company in the world and the seventh largest trade book publishing company in the U.S.   On his Intentional Leadership blog, he recently wrote about “Not To-Do Lists.”

Hyatt suggests that while most have mastered the idea of using a To-Do List and employ a variety of technological tools for managing their list, far fewer have created and follow a Not To-Do List.  He explains: “The idea is to list all the activities you are intentionally going to stop doing for the sake of greater productivity.”  Once you have crafted a list, Hyatt recommends that you seek your boss’s blessing, then share it with your assistant (if applicable) and colleagues.

So What?

Knowing what your role is and isn’t is an important part of being successful in any position.

  • Is your communication with colleagues about what you must decline primarily proactive or reactive
  • Do you have a “Not To-Do List”?  If so, what is on it?


  1. Jerry Franz says:

    Hyatt is one to something here. Managing our lives before the Lord does involve doing — and not doing. Hyatt is helping us to see that the latter needs just as much attention as the former. Not doing those things we have deemed worthless (or worse), gives us not only more time to do good things, but perhaps a greater momentum or traction in life for those excellent and profitable endeavors, don’t you think? I need to reflect on this a bit, which may take a bit of courage, as I’ll probably run into some things that need to be put on the jettison list.

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