31 Days of Calm in My Chaos
You’ll find a great free printable To Do List at the end of this post that coordinates with my “This is My Life” Planners! But first…
Tuesday, I shared with you how using a planner can reduce your stress. Today we’re talking TO DO Lists.
Obviously, if you’re using a planner – especially one like my “This is My Life” Planner that includes a daily chore list – you’re probably already implementing the To Do List, and even if you haven’t been using a planner, you may already be using a written To Do List – or even an app on your phone to help you remember all those things you need to get done on a given day.
But how can you use a To Do List in the best possible way to get more done – and not feel stressed out at the end of the day?
Three Reasons Your To Do List Doesn’t Work
There are three reasons why your To Do List may not be working for you.
- Too many items to check off.
- You forget to look at your To Do List.
- Unrealistic items to check off on any given day.
How to Best Use a To Do List
A To Do List can be your best friend. It will help you stay focused each day and get more done – if you do it right.
- Before you write anything down on your list, consider what you have going on that might make certain tasks harder. For instance, I babysit a couple of my grandkids all day long on a regular basis. Trying to load and stack hay is unrealistic if I have to take these two boys along with me.
- Don’t try to do too many things in one hour. Often, getting one thing done in one hour is all you can expect to do. Especially if you are a stay at home mom – and even more so if you homeschool.
- Remember, just like a planner only reduces your stress if you actually look at it and use it, a to do list isn’t going to help you if don’t refer back to it during the day.
- Eat the Frog. If you get that one thing done that you really don’t want to do… the rest of your list will seem easy. Just get it out of the way. You’ll feel better.
- Combine your errands so that you’re saving time and money. Try to limit your trips to town to one day a week.
- Delegate chores. It’s okay to ask for help. It’s okay to assign your kids chores on your To Do List. You don’t have to do it all to be an amazing mom. And sometimes it okay to ask your husband, too!
Of course, we all have days when things just don’t go as planned – and that’s okay. Life doesn’t have to always go as planned to still be spectacular. Believe me, I have more than my fair share of those days! Go ahead and embrace the season you are in. Be joyful in this moment.
Some of us DO work more efficiently than others. Creative types like me need space to breath in between to do’s. I often visit the Prudent Homemaker’s blog and she amazes me!
Really though, simplifying your life will ultimately mean simplifying your to do list. And ultimately, life shouldn’t be about doing more. Your life should be about creating rich and meaningful relationships and carving out a space in this world that will help nurture those relationships at home.
This last year, as I’ve worked to overcome my burnout, I’ve spent more time focusing on laughter, good food, hanging out with my kids and less time on having a perfect house and a superwoman to do list. In fact, my to do list is often on the small side. Did you see my simplified schedule in my This is My Life Planner video?
And you know what? I’m enjoying my life more.
Free Printable To Do List
I have a free weekly to do list to for you to download. This free printable coordinates perfectly with my “This is My Life” Planners available in the bookstore.
I designed this To Do List so that if you want to insert it into your planner, it has two pages front and back. But you can just use the first page if you like.
How to Download
- Follow me on Twitter and/or Instagram if you can. Or Pinterest. Thanks!
- Download the .pdf file for the To Do This Week List here.
Today’s Goal: Decide if your To Do List is making your life easier or making you feel defeated at the end of the day.