Avoidance Checklist Resolution

Avoidance Checklist Resolution
Avoidance Checklist Resolution

Notes to self: Get more exercise. Eat better. Spend more quality time with family and friends. 

Sound familiar?

From time to time, we all make commitments and resolve to change our behavior for the better. I’ve personally succeeded and failed with a number of resolutions — and I still love challenging myself to improve.

Last week, I blogged about my plan to recommit to one of my 2020 New Year’s Resolutions. Acknowledging that I hadn’t kept my original goal, I’m starting over with one important modification: I’ll be cutting my original commitment in half.

After thinking about it for the past week, I decided that the most meaningful resolution I can keep for the rest of the year is to stay current with my Avoidance Checklist (AC).

Over the past year, I developed and used the AC to track all the priorities and obligations I might be avoiding. Here’s a general outline of how I organize it:


  • 3. Level Three belongs to urgent tasks I really wish I could avoid. Like a difficult conversation I absolutely don’t want to have.

  • 2. Level Two is also something I’m avoiding, important but not necessarily urgent.

  • 1. Level One usually includes responding to emails, texts and phone calls. Things I need to do, but have difficulty finding time for.


  • Here I list tasks that I’m not necessarily avoiding, but I’ll eventually need to do.


  • These are tasks I can delegate.

  • I list the tasks along with the names of the persons to whom I’ve assigned them.

  • I make sure a person has finished a task before checking it off.


  • I once used a calendar to keep track of my schedule, but I look at the AC so often that I now jot down my scheduled events and meetings here. For example:

  • 7/1 Wed. 3pm Katie. Send zoom invite.


  • This space is where I jot down all my ideas and notes.

Some might consider my AC tacky, but as a busy husband, father, CEO, and bookish blogger I’ve come to depend on it.

In January, I set a goal of going over and checking at least four entries off the list every day. But consistency was a struggle. So I’ve revised my commitment.

Starting today, I’ll:

  • Review my entire AC at least four days a week

  • Check off at least two items on each of those days.

I’d love to hear from my readers.
– Have you experienced New Year’s Resolutions successes or failures?
– Are you committing to a Half Year’s Resolution?
– Have you developed a personal priority system you’d be willing to share?

If so, please send it to me through the contact form!

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