The real reason why you aren’t getting your to do list done (and what to do about it.)

Fair warning….. 

Brutal honesty coming at you from a mom of two young children trying to build a business and live her best life without going crazy and expecting too much of herself… read on my brave sissssters if you too are overwhelmed with daily life and trying to figure out what the heck you are doing with your life!  Maybe we could figure this out together, right??

Successful people tell you to make your next day’s to-do list the night before but I’m totally exhausted and the dishes are staring at me.  And there’s always the things that bother me that just do not seem to ever get off the list that get carried over into the next day and the next day and the next day….. Yikes it makes me cringe just writing that out cause it’s like a repeating song in my head all day saying “stay focused, do the things, it doesn’t matter how you feel, just do it!!” WHY though??  Why am I doing this to myself?  What will I get in return for working this hard?   Maybe I’m just torturing myself!  OR MAYBE there are at least a million other women out there taunted by their own to do lists and missed marks of what we think we should have already done!!!!  

I remember a post I wrote on my facebook page asking women if they ever get mad at themselves for not working out or eating right or staying on their to do list and the responses were a resounding and very passionate unified “YES, everyday!”  I don’t know where all of this pressure is coming from totally.  I guess I have some theories but that’s not where I’m going with this.  

I have a special message for you if you know me and what I’ve been through in the last three months…… 

Do not try to comfort me in the fact that I just walked through a type of hell therefore I have an excuse to just let my life unravel.  I won’t listen to that cause the anxiety that goes with that choice is just too great.  There just has to be a better way.  Maybe I will wake up one day and realize that I SHOULD have just let some things go for awhile when I was grieving and trying to re-build.  That day is not today BUT you are right… 

I have a couple options here and you do too.

 1. Get help.  I like this option the best because if you are able to duplicate yourself you can still get the list done AND you are getting closer to your goal at the same time.  There are some downfalls to this option but I have always favored it the most because I value peace only slightly more than personal growth so those two core values are both satisfied with this option.  

2. Re-evaluate your goals and your lists.  This one’s a little hairier and requires much more effort…. Again with the mental struggle between the desire for peace and the desire to keep getting better and better.  When I try to re-evaluate there is this nagging that takes place saying “you can’t let go of your goals, you just can’t get behind or else you’ll never catch up!”  I think this is because I have put an unrealistic timeline on reaching my goals and I look at other people who have seemingly reached their goals effortlessly or before me.  Yeah this is dysfunctional, I know, I’m working through it and I don’t ever want to give the appearance of having things figured out that I just absolutely do not have figured out!  So I’m being see through instead of projecting the lie of perfection.  I actually did a free class on setting your goals so you can actually accomplish them here:

3. Pray, meditate or otherwise clear your head.  I go to this a lot because in order to really get my stuff done, I need my head to be clear so I understand what I need to get done instead of just busy-ing myself for the sake of “feeling like I got something done.”  But the reason I do this is not just to have my head clear to get more stuff done.  It’s just to connect with God the Father and really find peace cause He’s the only true peace I’ve ever found.   

4. Ignore your list and do whatever the flark you wanna do! Not gonna lie, somedays this is totally appealing to me but revolting at the same time.  My counselor has me scheduling in once/week “me time” where I just can’t do any work or studying or researching or phone time.  It’s just me and the wide world of open possibility for fun things to do.  But it’s hard to shut my mind off of work, that’s why this is scheduled out come hell or high-water.  Little revelation for you…. Sometimes I think we are all obsessed with productivity and we lost touch with having lighthearted fun.  Or else the other extreme is living only to have fun and letting your dreams die so you can have fun.  Both are weird, let’s be honest.  

I really can’t think of other options but I would love to hear from you if there is an angle I missed.

Actually, I could have added get counseling…. Keep reading for More on that.

The simple trick here is to recognize THE ABSOLUTE LIE that you can get everything done that you wanna get done.  And that, my sweet sister,  is what trips me and maybe you too?  It’s just this little ant hill that I trip over as I am ascending the proverbial mountain of life.   

But it’s a lie that I have believed and it’s the root of my greatest struggle.  I should recite this everyday “you can’t get everything done that you want to get done so what is most important to you?”  I should say that everyday until I know the answer.  Not what other people want of me, but what do I want from my own life?    

AND that is where the breakdown shows up clearly.  We don’t know what we want.  We just want it all.  We want the business and the great kids and the husband and the body and the healthy diet and the friends and the success and the travel and the clean house and the nice car.  I just named all the things I want all at once.  But what can actually be attained in tandem?  What of these things are most important to me?  DO I really have to cut out any of the things to get the other things?  WHAT DO YOU WANT PAULA!?  

I know I’m bringing you through the spider web of thoughts I’m processing through but I was searching for the bottom line and I think I found it.  I don’t know what I really want in my life right now.  I thought I knew but as the daily mental struggle rages on, I don’t even want to look at my to do list because I’m not sure if it’s getting me anything.  If I knew what I wanted, the list would be crystal clear.  Are you following me?   

As my counselor (GOD BLESS MATT at would say: Paula, what are you gonna do about this problem?  

Well I am gonna ask for help, hire some people while I walk out this tough season and in the background work through answering the question of “what do you want, Paula?”

Love and luck to anybody else struggling with the hard questions in life,

Paula Thiel 

social media expert in training :)