The magic of the Not-To-Do list

We all know to-do lists. They often determine our entire daily routine. But what is a Not-To-Do list actually?

There are many successful people who actively decide against certain things. A famous example is the star investor Warren Buffet with the following quote:

“The difference between successful people and really successful people is that really successful people say no to almost everything.”

Why a Not-To-Do list

The aim of the Not-To-Do list is to identify and radically remove anything that prevents you from achieving your life goals. This includes daily tasks as well as bad habits that have crept into your life over the years. For this purpose it is worthwhile to analyse your everyday life a little more closely. Usually you will find many time-eaters. Typical examples:

  • How much time do I spend in front of the television?
  • How long do I have to deal with trivialities?
  • Do I have to check my e-mails several times per hour?

Some time ago I put many of my daily tasks and habits to the test. One of the negative habits for me was television. Instead of watching television for two hours a day, I drew pictograms to build up a passive income. After a little more than a year I have drawn well over 25,000 pictograms / icons and offered them for sale on various online platforms. I have largely traded unnecessary TV debates about the Greek crisis, Brexit and Trump for the realization of my dream of financial independence. A good deal in my opinion.

So one item on my not-to-do list was “television”. Of course I do not succeed in to cut the television to the same extent every day. But just the conscious watching alone creates a lot of time.

My personal Not-To-Do list

What can a Not-To-Do list look like? Here are a few items from my personal list:

  • Retrieve e-mails several times a day
  • unconsciously spend money
  • work with unpleasant customers / people
  • operate late into the night
  • recommend dubious products on my blog
  • Start days unplanned

Discipline is required

It is very difficult to change entrenched habits from one day to the next. Therefore I have downloaded a small tool in form of a free app called Way of Life (iOS). This program helps me to build new and positive habits by keeping a small diary and measuring my progress.


With the Not-To-Do list I have managed to organize my time much more efficiently. In addition, I focus much more on the most important and promising things in my life. This includes consistently saying no, as the quote from Warren Buffet already shows. I hope this article motivates you to make your own personal Not-To-Do list. The work is worth it! With this tool you will reach your personal life goals faster. Good luck!

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