Mental Health, To-do list, therapeutic writing, learning distance, LWS.

To-do List: A Way to Get Organized inside and out!  

In the last article we talked about the plasticity of our brain, remember? Today we are going to talk about small steps. We are water in human form! We are knowledge and emotions.

Intertwining feelings and learning can be a way of attributing new meanings to the task of learning something new every day. Let’s go?

First of all, a to-do list is nothing more than a sequence of words that can express things or ideas, and that usually refers to something to be done today!

We have one goal: learnwithscience! And what could be just an informal conversation will become a proposal for scientific reflection on how a simple list can contribute to achieving our goals.

Building a house, gaining or losing weight, or learning a new language can be goals as difficult to achieve as going to the grocery store and not forgetting any of the mentally listed items while opening the fridge. We cannot forget that the method is for everyone, young and old, experienced or lay people in the activity they propose to do.

Yes, we are talking about a method! A path is formed by a sequence of words/phrases that we need to carry out to reach our goal. And in this article, we will demonstrate how we can make it more effective. Some initial tips: a) pay attention to the logical sequence behind the words listed; b) try to place the tasks in the sequence of events in which they should occur.

Let’s start with the logical sequence: to make a cake, for example, we need to take the ingredients – separate them, mix them, etc. Listing ingredients separate from preparation procedures or final remarks is a way of organizing information into groups.

The cake example is great because it helps us with the next step, getting the tasks done on time. First, we separate, then we mix, and then we put it to bake.

Making daily lists about our needs, whether objective or subjective, helps us to organize the information that our mind fights to not be forgotten and, as for feelings, can help us to see them in a different prism or, simply, help us to seek strategies to feel better.

So if your question isn’t as straightforward as baking a cake or learning a new language, we argue that lists can be our allies when we have a feeling inside that we need to work. Losing a beloved puppy or being fired are experiences that can be difficult to deal with.

There is scientific evidence on how therapeutic writing can be, how deep, complex, and with positive impacts on different types of diseases and emotional states. Writing is like unraveling a ball, organizing it, and, what at first may seem tiring, over time becomes a tool to feel better and calmer.

Writing or imagining how we want to be, how we would like to overcome our obstacles, listing desires, creating sequences, and an action plan could help us get through a hard period of time.

A few more tips: find a quiet place to list your desires, book it for yourself and come back to the list whenever you feel like you’ve lost your way; lists with small goals that are accomplished can be the engine for confidence in achieving bigger ones. When we achieve our goals, we move forward. A list must first of all be possible.

Anyway, what we always propose is that learning takes us further! Whether in the field of languages or cuisine, may the methods be organized in a way that brings us more understanding, clarity, and well-being.

Make your wish list, learnwithscience and come with us!


Baikie, K., & Wilhelm, K. (2005). Emotional and physical health benefits of expressive writing. Advances in Psychiatric Treatment, 11(5), 338-346. doi:10.1192/apt.11.5.338