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A Quick Guide to Undoing the To-Do List

Feel Good EffectRobyn DownsComment

I’m a list maker.

Give me a task, a job, a day and I’ll make a list.

A Quick Guide to Undoing the To-Do List

Maybe even a spreadsheet.

Possibly color-coded.

I’ve always found lists comforting, a way to organize and categorize the chaos, and--I’m not gonna lie--I simply love crossing things off.

The problem with lists, though, is that they quickly become unwieldy.

Items get added without regard to what’s already there.

Without mind to time.

Or reality.

Or to what matters most.

This used to be me: I’d make lists.

Long lists.

Then I’d go about trying to check things off, all the while adding more.

Always more.

Stuck in the cycle of never done, never enough.

Every day ending with an uncompleted list.

Then one day I (finally) realized that I was the one making the lists.

So here’s what I did: I stopped creating impossible lists.

Instead of the never-ending, I focus on three.

Writing just three priorities each day--for work, for family, and for myself.

The prioritizing?

Now that's the hard part.

But also, the good part.

Because the end of the day doesn’t mean a list of things that didn’t get done.

Instead it means a short list of what mattered, plus lots of letting go of what doesn’t.

What would it look like if you reframed your lists?

Less piling it on.

More peeling back.

Doing less to feel more.

Undoing the to-do. 

#gentleisthenewperfect


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