Episode 152 The Best Way to Tackle Your To-Do List
You are listening to episode 152 of the Peaceful Mind Podcast.
Welcome to the Peaceful Mind Podcast, a place for creating the peace of mind. You need to be the best mom. You are created by God to be. If you wanna bring more balance, more joy, and more peace to your motherhood, this is the place for you. I'm your host, certified life coach at Catholic Mom Danielle Thienel
in the name of the father of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Let's get started.
Hi everyone. Welcome back. Today we're gonna talk about a subject that we moms are so familiar with. It's something that we probably think about and maybe even act upon every single. And that is having a to-do list. We might not have a written to-do list, which I'm sure a lot of us do have one, but I know that we mentally always have a to-do list.
And today I wanna talk about tackling it. I wanna talk about tackling it in the best way. Looking at your to-do list in a whole different. Than you ever have before is one of the things that I am aiming for with this episode. I wanna offer a few insights and tips for you to finally have a better relationship.
With a to-do list, I often talk about the relationship that we have with non-human items. For instance, in my busy to balance life coaching program, I have a training called relationship, relationship with your Money. Okay? So we all know that money is not human, but did you know that you have a relationship with it?
We discuss our relationship with your time. It's relationships. That exists in our mind and relationship is how we relate to another person, but it's also how we relate to things. And today I wanna talk about the relationship you have with your to-do list, because I believe the best way to tackle it is to have a really good relationship with it.
There's no doubt about it that, and there's no arguing that when we have kids, , even if it's just one. And then a lot of us have multiples and just any other human beings that we are added in our life, in our family, in our environment, adds a complexity to our lives. And when other humans are in our care, and it's not just ourselves that we're caring for, it's inevitable.
We're going to have more things to do and to take care of. So what I have found is that when we grow and we have a better relationship with our to-do list and how we're spending our time and what we're actually getting accomplished, that what you're feeling during the day and how you're going about it all.
Getting those things done gets elevated. You have a rise in satisfaction on what you are accomplishing in your life when your relationship with the actual items and what's on the list, and the list itself is increased, and then you're more tapping into being able to feel proud of what you're doing. . So today, in order for me to help you elevate your relationship with your to-do list and therefore tackle it in the best way, I wanted to give you some different items to think about, some different ways to think about your to-do list.
So the first one that I wanna bring up is that in general, humans overestimate what they can get in a. Humans overestimate what you can get done in a day. And the second half of that is that we underestimate what we can get done in our lifetime. So again, this it, it just deems repeating cuz I, I know that I needed to say it to myself again when I first heard it.
We underestimate what we can get done in a life. So how wanna, how I wanna break this up for you is that really what it means is that we place the importance, the level of importance on what we are doing in our daily life. Day after day, hour after hour, minute after minute, we place what's more, most important to us instead of thinking about the big picture of our lives and what we are accomplishing as a.
so that when we are on our deathbeds and we're looking back, we're gonna be thinking about our life and what we experience and accomplish in a big picture way. But I don't want you to wait till then to think about it that way instead of getting bogged down in the weeds of the daily activit. We're not gonna want to be thinking back that, oh yeah, on that one Tuesday that I had 20 items on my to-do list, I only did 10 of them.
That's not how we will reflect on our life, but what we're going to be thinking about is the human beings that we raised. The work that we accomplished, the vocation that we had, the impact that we made with that vocation and the world, and we're gonna think about how we felt about our lives if we felt that we enjoyed it, that we were happy, or we just resentful and annoyed and frustrated and disappointed and overwhelmed and angry all the time in general.
what would you say about your life, like the big picture of what you're accomplishing? Did we live our life in general as a victim to our circumstances? Or are we gonna look back on our life and say, oh, we totally took what we were given and we just made the best of it. Some days we were on top of it, and some days we just didn't get 'em all done.
Did we make lemons out of lemonade when life dealt us some hard knock. , but notice that we won't be wondering if we did everything on our to-do list every day. That's just not what we will see as what mattered. So the first thing about this to-do list and the best way to tackle it is that I wanted to talk about that idea that we overestimate what we get done, what we can get done in a.
So let me back up and say that I love the idea of having a list. I love the, the idea of it being in front of me and that I can see all the things that. Was in my brain swirling around that I wanna get done. But instead of keeping it on the inside, I actually got them out of my head and on paper so that I can see them, physically see them, instead of just thinking about them or forgetting about them, or having to take them extra mental energy of having to remind myself of what they are.
Because when we keep things inside of ourselves, it's emotionally and mentally drain. And so I'm a big component of having a to-do list. I'm not knocking them at all. I think it's something I want to urge you all to do, but I want you to know that I'm urging you to do what I think will bring more peace to your life around having a to-do list because of how.
Of how we wanna stop that spinning and overwhelm that happens in our heads and how much it does help to get it out onto paper. And when we can get it out of our minds and on paper, we then have the rest of the day to have something to guide us, to keep us on track because distractions will happen or will be fill filling our mind with new things to think.
and so then you have that reference PO point. Cuz when more thoughts come and overwhelm us and take up our time and more circumstances pop up, our brain gets so crowded with thoughts and even the thoughts of other people who we meet throughout the day and talk to them and that they offer us. So we can refer back to that list and see it as a reminder, oh yes, I decided that this is what was important for me to do.
However, think about the first notion I told you about overestimating what we do in a day. This is another thing that I wanna offer you about your to-do list, and that is that we overestimate what we do in the day, and then we talk about getting like out it out of our head, right? So when we write it down and write down our list, then what happens?
What I see that happens with all of the moms that I talk to, and I saw it in myself. I just have so much awareness around it now that we make an exhaustible long list that really isn't doable in a day for a human being. It's overestimating our capacity to do more. I mean, yes, there are those days where we do get it all done, but if you really think of it as a whole, isn't it more that we are left at the end of the day with things to do on our list than more of those days where we do get it all done?
There are gonna be some days when you do have the energy for. However, what we don't wanna put on our to-do list, or what we don't put on our to-do list a lot of times is to rest, to recharge, to do the things that fill me up. Our to-do list doesn't say like, take a nap, go meditate. It's filled up with all these actionable things that we think are going to make us feel accomplished and proud and just daily, daily task.
But when we overestimate and put a whole bunch of things on our list, what happens is we figure out at some point that we can't and then we don't get it all done. And then we see that, that, that it's not happening. And the real truth is because we're not superhuman, but we don't think about that. We just beat ourselves up and are mad at ourselves at the end of the day and feel defeated.
Cuz we're like, yeah, I didn't get everything done and I should. or I was unmotivated and uninspired or I'm lazy, or I gave into those distractions or so-and-so called, and then there's some blaming too. And so we end up feeling not great about it. So I, and I say this to my clients, I say this to my, is, I'm like, day after day after day, we don't finish our to-do list.
and then we create that what we see that during the night we can actually just run up our to-do list for the next day too. And we just keep on adding more things as we sometimes, as we go along the day, we're just filling and adding more. So our list is always getting longer, but what's happening is we're setting ourselves up for.
Because at the end of the day when we don't accomplish it and we are feeling like we didn't get it all done, we feel heavy and defeated and discouraged as opposed to what I now suggest. And that is for you to underestimate what you can get done in that day. Get it out all on your list. Get it out. Get it out of your head onto paper, but don't make that everything that you got out be your to-do list for one day.
Maybe it's all that you wanna accomplish in a week, or get an exhaustive list out of your head because that's so helpful. But then just choose maybe, I don't know, five items on your list and have that be your day's to-do list and see if you can get that. and you're more likely to be on target and then accomplish these things because it won't feel a lot, it won't feel so overwhelming, and you'll be able to be proud of yourself.
And if you only put a handful of things on your list, you can leave room and time for other things like rest and relax. And so at the end of the day, you're like, yes, I did it. I did those three things. I did those five things instead of I didn't do those 10 things. Do you feel the difference? So when it comes to your to-do list, I highly recommend you start underestimating what you can accomplish in a day, and that is the best way to tackle your to-do.
And so if your to-do list is less, then you are more likely to feel like it's doable and accomplishable. And so then you'll do at least those items and you'll be able to check it off and you'll be able to give yourself a high five and feel proud of it. And lastly, I wanna offer you a mental trick on how I conquer my to-do.
and that is, I don't call it a to-do list. I call it a to done list. That's right. It's a little twist, but this is a great mental hack. A great tip I have for you. This is why I just repeatedly say our brain is so powerful. So what I'd like you to do is start writing your items. on your to done list. So you write them down in the past tense in a way, whereas you're putting down that they've already been completed, they're already the items that you want done in the past tense as if you have completed.
So for example, you could say packages sent instead of. Go to the post office. And so if we talk about like laundry, if we wanna get some laundry done that day you could write down two loads of laundry washed, folded, and put away, instead of just saying laundry, it is, what this does is it puts your brain already thinking as if the item is.
and you know, brains love to be given direction and tasks. And remember what we think about turns into our results. Our thoughts are that powerful. Our thoughts. Turn to things, and this is why visualization is also a powerful exercise. This is why like when we have vision boards, it's because you get into the feeling of already having that item, or it's a good reminder.
You visualize the end results that you want, and this in turn the way your brain interprets it, and so it tricks your body and brain into those feelings already just by thinking of it. So to recap what the best way is to tackle your to-do list is to stop carrying around your to-do list mentally, and instead get it out of your head and onto paper.
And then secondly, I want you to start underestimating what you can get done in a day, knowing. Overestimating what you can get in a lifetime is what we wanna be after. But as far as our daily tasks, we wanna underestimate so we leave room and spaciousness for getting things done, accessing, being accomplished and proud, and leaving room for relaxation and rest.
And three, I don't want you to use. Your to-do list against you. I want you to see how you can create one and have it work for you so that the end of the day you set yourself up to be and feel accomplished and proud and not defeated. And then lastly, I wanna invite you to reframe your to-do list and to begin to call it a to-one list and write down your items in a way.
It shows your brain and yourself that it's already done and completed. Okay, so there are my best practices for tackling your to-do list. I hope you enjoyed it and got some help from it, and will start applying what I've offered here today to help you just get all of those things that you're doing in your amazing mom life.
Accomplish, and of course, having more peace of mind around your to done list. All right, everyone, thanks so much for joining me. I'm so just grateful that you're here. If you like what you're learning, please rate or review on whatever you are listening, the podcast platform. I would appreciate it so much.
I love you all. I'll talk to you again next week. Take care. Thank you for tuning in to today's episode of The Peaceful Mind Podcast. Are you ready to take everything I teach you here and put it to work for your own life to really learn how to have peace of mind no matter what is happening around you?
If so, I'd love to have you as a client, as your coach. This is where you'll get personal and focus time on your own mind, using life coaching tools, concepts, and proven life, transforming wisdom, all through a faith-filled lens. To learn more about how we can work together, come on over to daniellethienel.com.
There you'll see how to sign up for a free coaching consult and learn how to get started. Until next time, peace be with you always.