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Why Drawing Your To-Do List Could Be the Secret to a Successful Day

When there are a million things to accomplish throughout the day, what’s typically your first plan of action? Probably a to-do list, right? With apps like Evernote and innovative ideas like the bullet journal, managing day-to-day tasks is supposed to be easy, and sometimes it is. But other times you just cannot seem to remember what you’re supposed to be doing. If you want to really commit all those tasks to memory, there is a secret hack you should probably try.

According to research recently conducted at the University of Waterloo, drawing your to-do list is the best way to commit something to memory. In the study, participants were first asked to view a series of words that would be easy to draw. They were then given 40 seconds to draw or write that word. However, no matter which they chose, they had to be sure to actively use all the time allotted (i.e., those who were drawing had to keep adding detail while those who chose to write had to continuously rewrite the word). Afterward, the group was asked to recall as many words as they could. Those who drew their words were able to remember more than twice as those who wrote theirs.

Researchers also conducted this study on a larger scale at a lecture hall and saw the same results. They even tried again, this time adding in the option to instead list attributes of the word (for example, if the word was “coffee” they might write something like “caffeine, brown, hot”). Participants could also choose to focus on a mental image of the word or stare at a picture of the object. However, throughout each experiment, drawing the word was the most successful.


Why does this work so well? NY Mag says the success seen in the study was partially because it “required people to use a combination of the skills they used separately in the other tasks.” In order to draw something you have to take into account what it looks like, then actually think about how you were going to draw it and then use your motor skills to make that happen. It required a lot more brain work than quickly scribbling down a word, but the results seem well worth the extra effort. Your daily to-do list might not make it into any galleries in the near future, but it could very well be the secret to a super productive day.

How do you keep on top of your to-do list? Share your tips with us on Twitter @BritandCo.

(Photos via Getty)

Alright, folks. We've officially made it to fall. And if you haven't already started switching out your decor (as long as it's ready by Friendsgiving, right?) you still have time to do so. Draw inspiration from this round-up of new home products that includes harvest-inspired candles, cozy linens and textiles, and a v. practical piece of furniture. One scroll through these, and you'll have all the motivation you need to transition the seasons. Scroll on to start shopping.

Prism x LOREM Collection ($96+): Calling all Cali babes. The popular Long Beach boutique, Prism, announced a boho-fabulous collab with home decor line, LOREM, that we can't get enough of. Shop everything from plant hangers (eight options, to be exact) to artwork, all inspired by the very colorful vibes of the brands. If you were looking for a cheery way to tide you through winter, this. is. it!

Floyd Mattress (Price TBD): Fans of the cult-favorite Detroit-based brand will love their latest launch debuting on October 29. The highly-coveted Floyd Mattress will have the same made-to-last design and superior comfort as their other furnishings, tailored perfectly to fit the line's in-demand bed frame. Additional details for the mattress include a breathable foam material, highly-mobile packaging, and a low-profile design to secure your best night's sleep yet. Check back on the last week of the month to get one for yourself.

Dims 'Composed Vanity' ($595): Small space? No problem! Direct-to-consumer brand, Dims, is giving you a quick and stylish solution to your storage needs with their newest item that doubles as both a desk and vanity. The functional piece is made with non-toxic, chemical-free materials and can be assembled in seven minutes or less. Throw in four sleek shades to choose from, and this may just be your best purchase of 2019 yet!

Saatchi Art x The Citizenry Holiday Collection ($225+): Get ready to deck your walls this holiday season. Saatchi Art partnered with The Citizenry in a one-of-a-kind collection that features a curation of art across styles. Explore everything from modern to abstract creations in a selection so stunning, it's bound to spark a conversation at your next gathering.

NEST Spiced Orange & Clove Collection ($16+): If you haven't experienced the addicting aromas of the beloved NEST fragrance brand, this is the perfect time to get on board! The label recently released their latest scent — spiced orange & clove — just in time for all your gatherings. Inhale festive notes of orange pomander, spiced brandy, cinnamon, and gingered honey across their suite of candles and diffusers to bring all the good vibes to your home.

Bloomingdales x RiLEY Home ($19+): RiLEY Home gets millennials. So they teamed up with Bloomingdales to make shopping their selection more attainable than ever. Now, you can get in on long-lasting, luxurious staples like flannel sheets, bedding, printed throws, premium pet beds, and more, by shopping online and in-stores at the department store. (Trust us: These dream goods are ones you're going to be *glad* you stocked-up on.)

Italic Serene Towels ($12+): The luxury brand that prides itself on using the *same* factories namesake brands (like Calvin Klein and Lacoste) use, but without the price tag behind them, brings you a new product for fall. Treat yourself to Italic's ultra-soft towel set spun from fluffy, 100% Australian cotton, in a convenient set of six. Consider it the perfect indulgence after a long soak in the tub on a cozy FNI (Friday night in)!

Hyascent x Neiman Marcus ($169): 'Tis the season for a delightfully scented home. Warm your abode with scents like bourbon joy, cheeky rose and more in a unique diffuser that doubles more as decor than a fragrance-inducer. Fresh off the (online) shelves of Neiman Marcus, explore nine scents that last up to six months in a specialized hourglass holder. (Shhh! Your friends will never know the secret of why your place smells so darn good!)