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What Is an Annual Checklist?
To understand what an annual checklist is, you should know what a checklist is in the first place. As mentioned earlier, it can be easy for humans to keep on forgetting things. To deal with this natural human flaw, some people take supplements, which people commonly call brain boosters. According to Webmd, Ginkgo biloba is one of the most used because it is more promising than other supplements. An assistant clinical professor in medicine of Duke University Medical Center in Durham, Evangeline Lausier, also added that this dietary supplement is mostly used in Europe for people with dementia.
Other people also use reminders, which can also be effective, but when it comes to a long list of tasks, reminder tools alone may not work effectively as it would be hard for a person to track each of the tasks, which is very essential in getting all the things done. If you make it a habit to check your checklist, however, you don’t have to deal with the reminders that much. To be clear, though, reminder tools are still very important tools for certain tasks.
Through a job aid like a checklist, you can reduce the failure of doing things by compensating the gap of human memory and attention. A checklist is also a great tool to incorporate in critical tasks. This is especially true for tasks that need proper documentation. It can help busy people like you carry out things at the right time. It also ensures that all the affecting factors, which you are going to include in the checklist are all taken into account. With this tool, you can also execute your audit plan with ease.
While a checklist is essential in making things done in the short term, it can also be beneficial for achieving long-term goals. Thus, aside from the daily, weekly, and monthly checklists, such as the bill pay checklists, you can also create an annual checklist, which is almost the same thing. The difference is it is focused on annual activities. Take note, however, that it does not limit to tasks that are done annually. It can also include repetitive activities that you have to execute within the year, but to make more emphasis on small details, it is best to create checklists with different periods.
How to Create an Annual Checklist
Creating an annual checklist is not that different from daily or monthly checklists. You can simply apply the steps that you used for the monthly rental inspection checklist to create an annual rental inspection checklist. You can even refer to the monthly checklists to create the annual ones. In this section, you will learn how to create an annual checklist.
Step 1: Dump Everything in the Paper
In this step, it is very easy to succumb to the number of things you have in mind. However, you don’t have to worry about what you write here. First, get a piece of paper. You can use Google docs, Microsoft Office Excel, and other word processors/list creator software. List everything that you need to do within the year. It is also a great idea if you include all the tasks and activities in the office that need to happen. You can even include the ones that are not yet final, but you wish to happen or the organizers are having second thoughts to proceed.
Step 2: Organize the Tasks
Dumping everything in the paper is one messy task, but it is essential in materializing this step. Once you have everything listed, organize them. You can organize them by frequency. For instance, you can group them daily, weekly, monthly, and annually. Even though you are creating an annual checklist, segregation will make your life so much easier. Doing so will also make it easier for you to create other periodic checklists(daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly). You can also organize them by type of task. For instance, you can group some items as an annual house/home inspection checklist.
In this step, you will also remove the things that you think are unnecessary. If you think they can still serve other purposes, you can also transfer them in a separate document.
Step 3: Put the Tasks on the To-Do List
Now that everything is organized, you can rewrite them as an actual checklist. List them according to their priority level. It is also a great idea to include the date and time when you need to complete them. You can also write details, but if it is too long, it is best to write it on a separate paper. Stuffing them in the main checklist will make the document confusing and hard to make out. For instance, you are writing a spring cleaning checklist and you include: buy items like cleaning caddy, plastic gloves, paper towels, scrubber, mop, bucket, broom, dustpan, etc. If the list of the items that you are about to buy is too long, it is best to note in the checklist “buy cleaning materials – refer to the list in another paper” instead of stuffing them all into the checklist, unless, of course, if the checklist itself is not that long.
Step 4: Check off Each Item that You Complete
Don’t treat your annual checklist just as a list. Make it happen! Keep the list in a way that comes in handy. Check the list more often and cross out or mark the item that has been accomplished. Using reminder tools, such as your phone’s alarm clock will also help to make sure that your tasks are done in time. Doing this step does not just allow you to keep track of the important things that you do. It can also motivate you to keep doing the things that you need to do, which is a great way to make your day more productive and achieve your goals.
Step 5: Add More Items as Needed
Having everything put in a plan, such as the weekly student planners is great. However, realistically speaking, stuff comes up. Priorities can change. Thus, to make your annual checklist more relevant and up-to-date, you need to add items as needed. That’s why it is best to use a software or web application to create and use a checklist. Doing so will not overstuff the paper. It’s eco-friendly too. However, it’s not a must. For some reason, writing them on paper can be more effective. Thus, it is your choice to put your checklist wherever you are comfortable.
What is a schedule?
A schedule is a type of checklist that contains possible tasks, and events that have to happen in the future. It can also include certain actions that need to take place. Usually, the items in schedules like an employee work schedule are listed in chronological order. It means that the things that need to happen are arranged from the first one to happen to the last one. To make a schedule, you will perform a process we call scheduling. It makes you the scheduler unless you let someone do it for you.
What is a to-do list?
A to-do list is a checklist that contains the tasks that have to be accomplished. Similar to a schedule, you can also list the items in chronological order. However, many people also list the tasks according to their priority level, and just like any checklist, you can also use it as a memory aid.
How to format an annual checklist?
If you are going to use a template from a checklist creator software, the usual format of an annual checklist includes a list with small checkboxes on the leftmost of each item. Once you complete a task, you just have to tick the box and a mark(usually a checkmark) is drawn in it. You can also choose to cross out the item itself, which is the best way to do it when you are using a piece of paper for a checklist.
Are there some drawbacks to using an annual checklist?
Using an annual checklist is generally beneficial. However, in certain cases, it can be a drawback. If your job involves dealing with time-critical situations, such as dealing with a medical emergency, it is not a great idea to reply to it excessively. You will need common sense. Nonetheless, you can still use this tool during intensive training.
Benefits of Using an Annual Checklist
Teachers create teaching plans for many reasons. So is creating an annual checklist. In this section, you are going to learn some of the most important benefits of using an annual checklist.
Why Do People Forget Things?
We have mentioned a few times in this article that people are prone to forgetting things. There’s an explanation for this forgetting. According to an article published in verywellmind.com, within an hour, more than half (56%) of information is forgotten by a person and 75% of memories are lost in just 6 days. Indeed, while a human’s brain can do a lot of wonders, its capacity to store and retrieve information has limitations. That said, there are a few reasons why they happen, such as decaying, which happens when another theory is formed in our minds. It can also be because of interference. It means that other memories can interfere with the other memories. At times, it can also be because it failed to make it to the long-term memories.
Aside from the natural phenomena, a human’s habits can also have something to do with it. For instance, according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, drinking alcohol can greatly affect the ability of your brain to store and retrieve memories. Excessive drinking can even cause memory blackouts. Having a lack of sleep, and even medications can contribute to this brain ability detriment as well.
Bad habits can indeed affect the ability of your brain to store and retrieve memories. However, it does not mean that there is nothing you can do about it. Making it a habit to exercise, sleep adequately, and rehearse the information can improve the ability of your brain to store and retrieve memories. Aside from these good habits, did you know that writing down the things that you don’t want to forget is an effective way to retain and easily recall them? Writing itself is a way to rehearse memories. Reading it in the future will act as a jump starter, making it easier for a person to recall certain memories.
Utilizing annual checklists, such as standard task checklists, home maintenance checklists, bookkeeping checklists, and other essential tools is indeed beneficial. It can help address a human’s limitations in terms of managing memories. It can also make you a better person by letting you do more things and achieve your goals. With the information that you learned here, you can ensure that the checklist that you are about to create will serve its purpose very well.