How To Free Yourself From Your To-Do List (And Be More Productive!)

Ambitious Resilience, Change & Reinvention, FEATURED, Human First Leadership

What’s your default setting? Human BEING or Human DOING?

If list-making was an Olympic sport, well let’s just say, I’d be the reason for the UK’s new strapline:

‘Bling bling, Baby!’

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My addiction to list-making plunged me into a world where I had several lists on the go at the same time. Lists for home, work, health, my kids, shopping and even lists of productivity apps to buy so I can make more lists – only this time with emojis! πŸŽ―πŸ„πŸΎπŸŽͺ

The shift came one day when I realised I was going to die with an unfinished to-do list!

I’m not gonna lie, it kinda took the joy away a little!

I used lists as a way of taking control only they actually caused overwhelm at the amount I had to do and how little time I had to do it all in. I attached success to having everything finished and then attached my value to doing rather than being. With that mindset, every list I wrote set me up for failure.

My mate Serena calls it ‘Busy Fool Syndrome’!

Success isn’t stealing time from your kids so you can reach inbox zero.

I’ve long since ditched To Do Lists in favour of To Be Lists. It still involves a list, but one that is much more impactful and liberating!

Your To Be List is how you want to feel after dinner with your family, that meeting, the week etc. It’s future-proofing yourself by planning what you want to be feeling, thinking and saying at the end of the day.

To Be Lists are super simple to create.

  1. Set an intention for the day, week or whatever.
  2. Describe how you want to feel at the end.
  3. Do things that will make you feel like that!

Oh and a little tip from an Olympian expert – Don’t write: bitter, twisted, angry and hateful because, well I’m fairly sure you don’t want to feel like that! πŸ€·πŸΎβ€β™€οΈ

Fancy a peek at my To Be List for today?

Essentially, To Be Lists are my little Jaz-hack to connect my WHAT to my WHY.

When I connect the things I do with why I am actually doing them (especially which of my values they feed) it removes obstacles to doing them.

Example, I’m not a fan of food shopping. It takes too long and contains too many decisions for my liking! When I reframe that using my to-be list, going shopping becomes all about joy!

‘Wow! I have the provision to go to any supermarket and buy fresh ingredients to book my kids a healthy meal so that they grow up strong – and we get to spend time together in the process. Winner winner chicken dinner!πŸ—’

Suddenly the thought of wheeling a trolley around Aldi makes me feel like a superhero. 🦸🏾

Your To Be List will make you feel more productive, less stressed and more in control – or your money back! (Bear in mind you didn’t actually pay to read this so perhaps make a To Be List for the intrinsic benefit to yourself rather than for the chance to harass me out of Β£2.50!)

Remember – part of the human condition is that everyone wants things to be better but nobody likes change!

Embrace it! What’s on your To Be List?


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