On Getting Your Shit Together

todo

This is where I tell you how to get your life on track so you can live your life like an Instagram star!  LOL, just kidding!  My house, my wardrobe, my children’s hair are all out of control messy.  We had a really, supremely terrible year last year, and the bummers keep on coming.  As a result, my already tenuous grasp on my life has suffered even more.  Even the happy addition of a new baby last year totally derailed my life.  I have, however, recently rediscovered an old pleasure that really really helps me to rein in my anxiety.  Yesterday I was flipping out about how many things I need to do.  I have a thousand mental tabs open at all times, and spreadsheets and Pinterest boards attempt to corral the crazy, but I get so overwhelmed sometimes that I just shut down.  I don’t know where to start, and I can’t organize my priorities, so I watch TV with a glass of wine and go to bed instead of dealing with the looming tasks that haunt my every waking minute.  It’s exhausting.

I decided I needed to process what needed to be done instead of trying to think it over, and so I went old school.  I busted out a pen and paper and started jotting down the things I need to do.  We rely so much on technology, but really I feel more stressed when I spend too much time on my computer and my phone.  My brain doesn’t organize that kind of information the same way.  A real list, on paper, feels so good.  It’s tangible, and you can physically cross things off as you go.

Making a list on paper seems straightforward enough, but I do have a few tips (a list about making lists…there is something wrong with me):

  1. Always, always, always include a couple of easy to accomplish activities so you can cross something off right away. It’s really motivating!  Even if the first thing on your list is “#1: Write a List” just so you can cross it off.  It’s awesome.
  2. Make sure your paper is lined. Pretty paper sounds great, and is great, but lined paper is the best.  It feels really neat and organized, and that’s the exact feeling you’re going for.
  3. Get a pen you really like. There’s something really cathartic about writing things down, but you need to feel good about it.  Something easy to write with that you can use to cross items off with a flourish!
  4. Write a list before bed. It prevents you from running through the things you need to be doing while you’re trying to fall asleep.  If you’ve already thought things through, and written them down, you’re free to let them go until the morning.
  5. Keep close tabs on your paper. I write EVERYTHING I need to do on my lists and sometimes I lose them…and then sometimes my husband finds them and they’re really embarrassing.

I do try to keep a running master list.  I’ve been using this free one for years, but I stumbled across these awesome notepads this morning and I think I might have to buy them!

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2 thoughts on “On Getting Your Shit Together

  1. Just FYI, I’ve been reading every one of your posts, but I never comment. So, here’s a comment!
    I make lists for everything! I use my iPhone’s Notes app. Although I love making lists on real paper, I would never have the paper with me when I needed it, so I made the tough transition to “writing things down” on my phone. It has helped!
    I even have a list of “Things to Google!”

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