Have you ever dealt with a little thing called to-do list drama? Or maybe it felt like a BIG thing!?
As mamas especially, our to-do lists seem to be never-ending. We’ve got our biz, our relationships, our kids’ schedules, and our own schedules (don’t forget about that). This can all cause a bit of some drama in our headspace.
This can make us think things like, “I have so much to do. I’m so overwhelmed I can’t get it all done. I can’t remember what I have to do.”
If that’s you – keep reading! I want to share my top FIVE tips on how to settle that drama so that you can get the stuff that’s on your list done without all of the panic.
My name is Rachel and I’m a mom of six. I founded Moms on The Rise because I wanted to help moms create a business that they love right from the beginning without all the drama and without all the time and money wasted. If you want to learn more about me, check out this page here.
Before I start, shorten that list, mama!
Having a bunch of stuff to do every day does not have to make us or break us. Limit it to 3-5 things every day and you are going to be golden when it comes to getting all this stuff done on your list. I know what you’re thinking – but trust me, there’s a way to limit it and still get that success that you’re looking for!
Just recently, I found myself in my own to-do list drama. I was going to be in my car for four hours until late at night (which is not fun for this early riser) and I found myself in a bit of a tizzy when I started to think of the week ahead.
I started thinking about the laundry that I needed to do, how our house is a disaster I’m sure since I had been gone, how my kids’ schedules would be non-stop, and just about all the things I needed to do for my work.
All these things are going through my head like crazy and I was starting to go into panic mode. Have you been there!?
Meanwhile, I’m driving! There’s no way I could pull out a pen and paper to write all these things down so I don’t forget them. So I decided to do something different to get me out of that drama, and I want to share the steps I took with you! Get out of the drama quickly and with ease so that you get all that stuff done and you’re not wasting time and mental energy on worrying about the to-do lists.
Here are the five steps:
Step One: Get it all down!
I’m a big believer in lists and organizing my thoughts. It makes me feel confident I won’t forget the important things I need to do!
Well, in this particular case I just shared about, I’m in the car, so what am I going to do?
I got out my phone and opened up an app where I can record things (highly recommend). I recorded all the things in my head that I was worried about or that I was scared I was going to forget. I recorded things like telling myself to look at the schedule, to talk to my husband about a certain thing about the girls’ schedule, to move a physical therapy appointment, and things I needed to do work-wise.
I had all these things in my head, so I got them down by recording them initially and then when I got started on things on Monday morning, I was able to put it down on paper and I didn’t forget any of it.
Have a system for this in place. Maybe you use the note app on your phone, carry around a notebook with you, or use the recording app as well. Keep these things nearby where your best ideas come to you – whether it’s while driving the kids to their next activity, working out, or just sitting on the couch.
Release your thoughts and drama onto paper!
Step Two: Figure out how much time each item will take.
Look at each one of the tasks you wrote down and try to figure out how much time it will take realistically (not just how much time you want it to take).
One thing on my list, for example, was taking photos for my instagram. I might like to think that I can do that in 15 minutes, but realistically it’s probably going to take me an hour because of all the steps involved.
Be realistic in how much time each task will take.
Step Three: Look at your schedule and get a good picture of what’s going on.
Knowing the things you’ll be working around can be a huge help when it comes to planning your schedule and solving that to-do list drama.
For example, one of the things that I needed to do this week was bookkeeping for some clients. For that, I usually need about three to four hours, and I wanted to do it all in one chunk. So I looked at my schedule and I thought, “Alright, I got to take my daughter to practice tomorrow night. I will have no other kids with me. I have three hours, so that’s when I’m going to do that bookkeeping.”
I scooped up the folders and everything I needed and I brought it with me to my girls’ gym. There, I sat and spread it all out on the table, I got to work, and I got it done! Where as if I had tried to fit it in a little bit here or there amidst my schedule, it would’ve been a complete disaster and I would’ve been interrupted. So look at your schedule realistically.
There also might be open windows for those smaller, random things on your to-do list like paying bills, messaging people back, and going through emails. Keep these types of tasks to your specific open windows and don’t let them interrupt those bigger chunks you had decided to use. Keep an eye out for the times on your schedule where you’ll need quiet or interrupted time as well. This is a huge thing for us mamas!
If I’ve got three hours of uninterrupted time, you better believe I’m going to use it very wisely and do the work that requires my concentration!
To do this, this means really looking at what it is you need to do, how long it’s going to take, and then where can you fit it in that’s going to make the most sense and be the most efficient.
Step Four: Find the right place to do your to-do list items.
Now that you’ve got your to-do list scheduled out, where do you need to be to complete them? Do you need internet, quiet space, etc.?
As someone who is always on the go, I have to think ahead of time for things like live videos especially. While they may not take very long to do, they’re not things I can do at my girls’ gym. This specific live I actually did from my car outside!
If you can work from home and have a dedicated space, great! Don’t be afraid to get flexible with space outside the home, though. Make it work for your schedule and don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions on what this can look like for you.
Step five: Once you’ve gotten your schedule figured out, stick to it!
You’ve figured out time, place, etc. The only thing to do now is complete it! Stick to the schedule that you’ve come up with unless there’s some sort of emergency thing that comes up. I’ve been there before where I’ve had a plan in place only to realize I couldn’t work away from home because the internet was down, a kid got hurt, the list goes on.
In these cases, be forgiving and be flexible! There are times where something comes up that there’s no option – be flexible with yourself! If you’re not able to do what you were planning on doing, there’s no point in beating yourself up.
There’s no point freaking out and thinking that you’re never going to get it done. That’s time and energy wasted on things that are not going to keep you working towards your goal of building your business. Be easy on yourself. Don’t beat yourself up if that stuff does not quite work out the way that you wanted it to.
Even though to-do list drama is bound to happen to us all, we do not need to live in it. Feel free to share this with anybody that’s having some to-do list drama that you know of.
If you’re interested in working a little bit further than your to-do list on your goals, let’s chat. If you’re looking to work on things like creating money, on building your business in a way that’s easy for you so you still have time to be present with your family, while still making a bunch of money, check out the Biz Bestie mentorship HERE: https://rachaeljencks.com/bizbestiementorship/.
I’d love to work with you one on one to build the business of your dreams while still having time with your family, because that’s the reason that we’re doing this, isn’t it? Don’t forget why you started this journey, mama.