In today's audio postcard I share a trick I discovered about to-do lists that can help prevent burnout.
Rather read than listen?
Are you a to-do list person? I am. I love lists!
They keep me organized and on track. Sometimes I feel like, without my lists, I wouldn’t know what to do. Like, literally speaking, I would have no idea what I needed to do if I didn’t write it down. Maybe you can relate?
I’m betting that many of you who are listening are list makers too. Sometimes there’s nothing more satisfying than getting things crossed off your to-do list. It feels so good – like you’ve accomplished something. Whether it’s a big something or a small something. It’s something, right?!
One thing I realized a couple years ago was that my to-do list was really a have-to-do list. It was filled with things that needed to get done. Everything I felt responsible for. And that’s when I realized there was something majorly wrong with my to-do lists.
Even though I loved my lists and they really helped keep me organized, I realized a huge mistake I was making. I wasn’t putting any of the things I wanted to do on my to do list.
After all, the things you want to do are just as important as the things you need to do.
So, I did an experiment. I started adding the things I wanted to do to my to-do list. To be completely honest, I wasn’t convinced it was going to make much of a difference. And, at the time, I wasn’t fully convinced that what I wanted to do was actually as important as all the things I needed to do.
But an interesting thing started to happen. Seeing the things I wanted to do – like taking a walk, or going to the art museum – on a list along with the things I needed to get done, started to change my perspective.
I realized that one of the reasons why the things I wanted to do weren’t happening was because I was forgetting about them. And I was forgetting about them because they weren’t written down anywhere. (Remember what I said about not knowing what to do without my lists?)
So the things I wanted to do weren’t happening because they weren’t on the damn list! And because they weren’t happening I had just assumed they weren’t important. I had convinced myself that they weren’t important – weren’t a priority.
But what I quickly realized was that was because I wasn’t making them a priority.
The things you want to do need to be a priority!
The things you want to do deserve to be a priority!
The things you want to do deserve to be on your to-do list!
Making the things you want to do a priority in your life – giving them the same weight and importance as all the things you need to do – is so important if you want to keep yourself from burning out.
If you neglect your wants and only focus on the things you need to get done, you may get an awful lot done, but you won’t have much of a life to enjoy. And if I know anything, I know that you deserve to enjoy your life!
Today's challenge: Start adding the things you want to do to your to-do list – whatever they are. DO an experiment for a week and sprinkle them into your list.
Leave a comment and let me know how it goes!