Toss your 'to do' list!


If the idea of tossing your 'to do' list makes you break out in a cold sweat, this post is for you. For years, my life revolved around my list of things that I felt needed to get done. The list had big things, small things, and everything in between. It also grew. It lived on paper and then on my laptop and then my iPhone. I think I may have spent more time with it than I did with most people. I thought it was my ultra-efficient assistant that made me productive and kept my life on track.


But here's what true. It wasn't a list of things that I needed to do. It was a constant reminder of all of the things that I hadn't done. It never got shorter and the better I got at checking things off the list, the better I got at coming up with things to add to it. And one thing I learned. If you are a master of the 'to do' list, you are also a master of coming up with finding things to add to it.


Here's something else that's true. You'll never get it all done. There are probably things on your list that have been there for weeks, months or even longer. We don't add to the bottom, we usually add to the top and push everything else down. A guarantee that those items at the end of the list will never see the light of day.


So how do we manage all of the things we need to get done if we don't have a list? Many use a list to manage an ever growing pile of tasks, obligations, reminders etc. And it's true, there are things in our life that need to get done. The real challenge is that most of us believe that if we can just manage what we're doing better, we can fit it all in. Then, when it's all done, we can finally relax.


That sounds great, doesn't it? Except that is isn't real. A 'to do' list never leads to relaxing or well-being. It just leads to more things to do. So, if you'd like to be a recovering 'to do' list master, here are a few places to start.

  • Question the things you believe you 'have' to do. The road to a happy live is not paved by doing more, but by doing less. Find things in your life that you can let go of. Maybe they are things that are better done by someone else or things that just aren't as important as your happiness and well being.

  • Share the wealth! Find ways to get support for things that you might not enjoy doing or are better done by someone else. Asking for help when you need it is one of the keys to a successful life. And if you find that you need or want to pay someone to do some of the things on your list - do that! You're helping to support someone else's family when you do that, along with getting something off your plate.

  • Schedule time on your calendar for important things you need to get done. Be sure to allow yourself plenty of time when you do block the time. Things we schedule tend to get done and things we don't, don't. Scheduling the time is a great way to make sure that the things you must do get done when you need them to.

These three tips can make a huge difference in your quality of life and overall sense of happiness and well being. Plus, your 'to do' list can officially retire. Go 'to do' list free for 30 days and begin to enjoy the task of living a happy life!