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Posted by on Dec 7, 2010 in Featured, Organization, Resources, Tip Tuesday | 3 comments

Tip Tuesday – To-Do List

Tip Tuesday – To-Do List

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Welcome to the first ever “Tip Tuesday” post! Each week, I will feature a helpful tip (that I actually use myself!) Watch for tips in a variety of areas. Today’s tip will help you reduce stress, sleep better, accomplish more, (feel like you actually got something done), and keep you organized and on top of things. Sounds too good to be true doesn’t it?  Well girls, it really works!

I found that I would lie awake at night pondering the many tasks to be done the next day. Next, stress that not everything would get done would set in, followed by worry over whether or not I’d even remember I wanted to get x,y, z done. I would struggle at the end of the day, feeling like I didn’t get anything done. I think a lot of stay at home moms in particular struggle with feeling like we do the same things over and over, and never feel as though we “do” anything. However, taking note of just how much we do during the day can really help us to feel worthwhile. Putting today’s tip into practice can help all of this!

1.  Grab a spiral notebook and pen.

2. Right before you go to bed for the night, jot down all of the things you want to get done the following day. Consider things like chores, errands, emails/phone calls to return, things you want to talk to your spouse about, things to do for/with your children etc. (My list is loosely organized into little categories. However, DO NOT STRESS about making the list look perfect. Do what works for YOU.) Take about five minutes and create your list.

3. Allow yourself to sleep soundly, knowing that your ideas/goals are written down, and no longer need to be worried about. Deal with everything in the morning. (You have a list now, so you will!)

4. In the morning, put the pen away. Do NOT keep adding to your list. However, you ARE allowed to write something down on the NEXT DAY’s page. As you go through your day, if you think of something else to be done, simply jot it down for tomorrow. (The only exception here is if you remember something that absolutely MUST be done that day, ie- pay a bill, return a library book, do something for a child’s homework, etc.)

5. Relish crossing items off your list. Gleefully cross off the items as you complete them.

6. Remember that you have ALL day to get your list done. Don’t sweat it if everything isn’t done by the time Drew Carey is calling people up on stage. While some things on your list are best to be done in the morning, some items on your list can wait until your kids are in bed.

7. Don’t freak out if you didn’t get everything on the list done. Transfer tasks over to the next day’s list. It WILL get done.

8. Try this out! This has made a WORLD of difference for me. I used to make to do lists frequently, but I wasn’t intentional about it, and they usually served to make me more stressed out…I usually waited until there was SO much to be done, or gave myself a time limit, etc. I love going to bed knowing that everything I need to do is already figured out, and not having to worry about remembering deadlines, etc.

My lists vary in length from day to day. Yesterday’s list had 31 items. Today’s has 15. I personally do not include things that I will do anyways ie- “make dinner,” “make the beds,” etc. Here are a few examples of things on MY list for today (just to get you thinking, and b/c I think glimpsing into other people’s lives is fascinating..)

-Start to wrap Christmas presents (a transfer from yesterday I might add..)

-S,M,C (stands for sinks, mirrors, counters) upstairs bathrooms

-Tip Tuesday up on the blog (Yeah! Almost ready to cross one off!)

So today, get a notebook and have it waiting for you tonight! Hope this helps!

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  1. I don’t ever have paper and pens around me when I think of my to do list, but my phone always is. I use the notepad on it to jot my ideas down.

  2. I *definitely* do this. The whole family knows about Mom’s notebook! I don’t feel nearly so weird now! I keep a running list – stuff that needs to be done this week, or just needs to be done, period. There are things on there that have stayed on for months and are still not yet done, like going through this box of pictures I have…..But I keep it there because someday I really am going to do it!

    Using facing pages in my notebook, I parse it into four sections: (1) Errands – things to be done outside of the home, (2) Things to do around the house,(3) Things to do or look up on the computer + phone calls to make, and (4) Things to discuss with hubby. Whenever I remember, oh yeah I need to do that….I put it in the appropriate area. Every so often – usually every week – I start fresh and re-copy the items that aren’t crossed off, if any, into their appropriate areas.

    Sometimes I do make a list for that particular day as well, transferring items from the “master” list. It really does help me feel not so overwhelmed – even if there are a lot of things listed – because I’m not as concerned about forgetting something. And crossing things off (I like to completely garble them out with curly lines!) is very satisfying. 🙂

  3. Great tips. I get so overwhelmed at night remembering things I have to do. It will be nice to jot them down to have a goodnight rest.

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