Yes, you read that right.
My To Do List is on fire.
Currently burning away in my back garden as I type.
You see, similar to a lot of women there are no less than one hundred expectations of me in any given day. While maybe not quite one hundred but you get the picture.
We are mothers, partners, employers, employees, daughters, and friends and with each of these roles come never ending duties and tasks that we try to keep on top of. Rather than us just take each day as it comes we feel it is essential to complete everything in one day. Whoever wrote ‘Rome was not built in a day’ was definitely not a female.
In a world of instant communication with messages to pick up more milk, proof read a presentation that must be presented the next day or prepare the cakes for your son’s school bake sale our lives simply becomes a list of tasks.
Now if you’re like me and typically a ‘pleaser’ this can turn into a daily nightmare. My solution to keep track of everything was obviously to keep a To Do list. Then I realised I needed more than one list and suddenly I was the proud owner of five To Do lists for each compartment of my daily life.
Each morning the same old story - start with a blank sheet of paper and list out everything that must be completed - not satisfied until my page was full. Before you ask, of course it was essential I completed all of the tasks today and absolutely nothing could wait until the next day. Everything written down – God forbid I might actually forget something and let a ball drop.
Now I know there will be experts out there horrified at reading this but bear with me. Yes, I have tried to control this in the past – Prioritise, delegate, drop etc. and set boundaries. However having such a list of tasks and busyness began to reinforce my sense of worth. Having so many tasks on my list surely must mean that I am a hard working person, a good mother and so on?
I will confess there is a certain sense of pleasure and achievement as you tick off those completed tasks. Then when ‘emptying the dishwasher and make lunch’ entered onto my To Do list I knew it was time to have a little chat with myself about my new addiction.
And so I did – this evening. So goodbye To Do lists (at least for tomorrow) and I’m looking forward in anticipation to:
◦ NOT feeling overwhelmed in the morning with a list of never ending tasks
◦NOT feeling an underachiever at the end of each day when I see so many unchecked tasks
◦ NOT having every hour of my day mapped out
◦ FREE time to breathe, think and stir my creative ideas again
◦Actually spend time with my family and be present instead of feeling guilty about all of the tasks still to be completed
Wish me luck!
Do you keep a To Do list or lists? Does it help or increase your feelings of overwhelm? I would love to hear your strategies for keeping your daily tasks under control. Let us know in the comments below.
Have a great day!