mental storage

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A lot of the mental lint isn't what you need to do—it's what you want to do. Perfect example: the movie I want to see with the girl from The Notebook and the guy who was the voice of Lightning McQueen. For these kind of nonessential goals, Stack advises what she calls category lists: Books to Read, Restaurants to Try, Movies to Watch, Wines to Taste, Hobby List, Errand List, Shopping List, Gift Lists. She even has a list called "Teachers" so that she can remember the faculty at her children's school.

"It's not like you're constantly reviewing these lists," she says, but they need to be with you (in a small binder, maybe) so that when you do unexpectedly find 15 minutes to run into a bookstore or pop into the hardware store, you're ready.