One of my most common worries is that I'm forgetting something. I feel like there's going to be a crisis at any moment because I dropped the ball. The fear constantly weighs me down... or at least tugs at my attention.
The antidote is a system to capture and deal with all of these "somethings" that are demanding our time and energy. There are many of these systems, but here are some important aspects that have been useful to mine.
1. Define the edges
Define all of the categories, or buckets, or drawers that things should fit into in your life. This is the famous Zig Ziglar wheel of life concept and Tony Robbins pyramid of mastery is also a good example.
You should be able to put anything you do into one of these buckets. Don't worry about getting this perfect; it's easy to add or change them along the way.
My current categories are:
- Relationship (my wife)
- Father (my kids)
2. Get it all out of your head
Make some space, sit down, and write everything down that you need/want to do. I use separate capture lists for each of my categories so I can drop the items into the appropriate buckets. This keeps the list(s) in smaller, manageable (and less scary) chunks.
As new things come up capture them in your list(s), or at least capture them somewhere and transfer them to your list(s) soon after (at the end of the day, for example).
3. Review your system regularly
In the beginning review your categories and capture list(s) daily. You need to learn to trust the system so you'll use it.
Eventually you can review the big list(s) weekly and decide which items to pull out into a focused weekly plan. I wouldn't review less frequently then that."