The Tyranny of the To-Do-List

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I noticed earlier this week that my to-do-list was stressing me out. I also know that this is a common experience for many people.

 There are some BIG problems with getting stressed out by our to-do-lists.

  • When we are stressed it is much harder to get into action.
  • At that moment we are obviously not enjoying life and we will never get that time back.
  • Whatever actions we do manage to take are going to be less productive, effective, efficient, inspired, and creative. So, we are now making things harder than they need to be (never a good strategy).
  • We are contaminating our future. We are throwing out the poop-covered boomerang. We are now busy attracting what we do not want instead of what we do want.

So, here’s the challenge: How do you interact with your to-do-list in a way that is light, fun, playful, expansive, and brings you more alive because if you are not doing that, you are getting in your own way.


Here are a couple of things I’ve done:

  • Really celebrate what I have got done.
  • Write “yahoo” or draw a smiley face rather than crossing out the completed item.
  • Ask myself what looks like the most fun thing on the list and start there.
  • Ask myself, “How can I make this fun?”
  • Close my eyes and put my finger down on the list and start there.
  • Rename it. My stuff I might do today list. My making a difference list. Etc.

It doesn’t matter what you do to make your interaction with your to-do-list a positive one. But, it matters a ton whether or not you make it a positive one.

Much love,


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