It's important to have tasks that provide unambiguous signals that you are making progress, even though individually those tasks do not seem significant.
Think of mindless mindfulness that lets you go diligently through a text and correct each of the small flaws that you notice. None of the flaws are burdensome, but there is need to accumulate evidence of care for a level of detail. Deep thought is not needed to do the work, but when it's missing the lack is noted.
Progress is a hard thing to measure with any degree of certainty. "Increase the n" is one typical useful task, as though by heaping on one more of whatever it is that you are counting you can get one measure closer to ultimate success. "Decrease the n" is the other task, which generally for me is the Sisyphian task of emptying the inbox or washing the dishes. You're never really done, and the only progress you note is that something happened today.
The meaningless indicator of progress can simply be the recognition that you have hit some temporary and attainable local high point to the day, and that even if tomorrow brings you back to a spot where you need to do more, you at least did what you needed to do today. Shining the sink is the domestic equivalent of inbox zero; yes, there still may be more to do tomorrow, but at least for today you're at the bottom of what needs to be done.
I'm gaining an ever increasing appreciation for copy editors, and the thankless task of reading things before publishing them, saying "huh?", and rewriting until you understand it.
The lyrics to "Increase the N" are from Science Creative Quarterly 4.
For "decrease the n", I refer you to Discardia.
In Greek mythology, Sisyphus was condemned to empty his email inbox each day, only to find it full the next day. See Doug Mann, The Electronic Myth of Sisyphus, 2006.
Shining the sink is from FlyLady. She recommends car wax in step 8.
Needless words were omitted by the editor.