I was chatting with some of the beautiful young mums at our last “Girls Day Out”, it’s a great opportunity of getting to know them and hear their hearts and thoughts about life and how they are navigating it all. I have to say we have some wonderful mums and the children are so blessed to have them.
As I listened to one mum of young children, she was sharing with me how she really struggles to accomplish different tasks each day. Daily tasks were hard and each night she would often fall into bed utterly exhausted and feeling very defeated, thinking of all the things she still wanted to achieve in the day but sadly hadn’t been able to, instead of peacefully sleeping.
I could see the frustration in her face, the look of failure and lack, the disappointment in herself and that feeling of ‘not being enough.’ I remembered how I used to feel like that at times when I was mothering four young children, it can be totally overwhelming and very deflating. Thankfully I was able to encourage her by giving her a tool that another, wiser older woman once shared with me when I was about this young woman’s age.
Back when I needed it, it changed my whole perspective. As I shared this strategy with this beautiful young woman, I could see the weight lifting off her and the light at the end of the tunnel appearing for her. Her eyes became brighter, her posture lifted and her excitement to try and put it into place for herself was just wonderful.
What I had shared with her was two steps for being able to achieve your best each day. These may seem simple, but they help with reassuring you that you have had a great day doing ALL that your family and you needed to have done. Hopefully, it helps the young woman I spoke to, and others that are struggling to be able to go to bed at night – exhausted maybe, but disappointed not at all.
All you have to do is write 2 lists.
- Write out a list each day or the night before of all the things that HAVE TO BE DONE for that day. The first list is the Essential’s list. Nothing but the essentials. Keep it short, achievable and congratulate yourself for accomplishing them.
- Write another list of all the things you would LIKE TO GET DONE but aren’t essential. This means the world won’t fall in if they aren’t achieved or you don’t finish the list. This list might be easier to do because they are tasks that seem easier or less tedious, but don’t stray from the essential list if it’s not complete.
Once you have those two lists written out, you can concentrate on getting done what really needs doing and not fussing about the things that aren’t important. You’ve already written them down.
As you accomplish your smaller list of ESSENTIALS, you will be surprised how much it energises you to then try and tick off some or (every now and then), all of the other things on your ‘non-essentials’ list. This takes the pressure off because the second list is one that if we’re not careful can get longer and longer. We can always think of things we would LIKE to get done if we only had the time however, if we can have the right perspective on those things, they won’t overwhelm us.
I found this has helped me to be organised, and focused on what really matters, which then gives me a clear vision for my day and also helped me see what was really important for the families’ day.
Some of you, like this beautiful young woman, may already have a list for the day. If so, make sure you have TWO lists, one for the ‘essentials’ and one for ‘non-essentials’. One thing I would encourage is to not try and do everything every day because your 100% will look different in different seasons and different days.
I hope this helps, I hope you can go to sleep knowing you have achieved all that you were capable of today, and rest knowing that you have given your best and your best is fantastic. This is a very simple tool but trust me it works wonders.