Why writing stuff down on paper is better:

  • You can see the entire list at once and don’t have to scroll through anything.
  • Paper lists don’t require batteries or charging.
  • You can hang the list on the fridge or somewhere else visible so everyone can keep track of it.
  • Some people just prefer the feeling of writing with a pen or pencil on paper (Yo).
  • There’s more freedom with a paper list. You can use coloured pens and highlighters to make it more visually appealing. You can easily add notes or draw arrows or doodles. You can even rip up the list when you’re done with it if you want.
  • Drawing a tick on a completed task is so much more satisfying than tapping on a screen.
  • You can get some beautiful printables and make your to do list a work of art!

Phone to-do lists have some advantages too:

  • You can access your list from anywhere, which is great for when you’re on the go.
  • You can often set reminders and alerts on your phone, which can help you stay on top of things.
  • Your phone is probably with you most of the time anyway, so you’re not going to forget your list.

Why does writing stuff down help you to remember it?

The physical act of writing activates different areas of the brain than just reading or hearing something does. When you write something down, you are essentially creating a “memory trace” that your brain can refer back to later. Of course, you can also refer back to the list if you can’t remember what you needed to remember.

So, which is better – phone or paper to-do lists?

A combination of both, of course. The best way to use a to do list is to keep a physical list that you can refer to throughout the day, and also add any new tasks or items to your phone so you don’t forget them. This way, you’ll always have your list with you no matter where you are, and you won’t have to worry about losing it or forgetting to add something to it.