Some of us live by them. Lists. To-do lists. With Christmas just around the corner the lists are only going to get longer. Making lists helps me sort out all my tasks, remember appointments, practices, due dates and upcoming parties.
I always feel a sense of accomplishment when I cross a task of my list. But the problem is my list never seems to get done. It’s frustrating to see everything I still need to do. I keep adding tasks onto the next day, over and over again—like write out and send those birthday cards (I can’t believe I still didn’t do that today)!
I decided to try something new. I’m tired of feeling like I’ve worked my fingers to the bone, but I’m still turning the hamster wheel and getting nowhere.
How about focusing our minds on all the accomplishments of the day? Click To Tweet
I decided to write out everything I accomplished at the end of the day.
I know what you may be thinking. You’re too busy to make a list of the things you’ve already completed. Who has time for that, right?
But even if you try it once, I bet it will help you feel better about your day.
After I looked at my list, I thought, wow! I did all that? I feel like superwoman now instead of a runner never reaching my destination.
Check out my day:
(The day before my son’s birthday party at my house)
5:45 a.m. Woke up. Let the dog out. Made coffee. Started the dishwasher. Started a load of laundry.
6:15 a.m. Checked my email. Bible Study: Looked up verses on fear for the upcoming series, “Trading Fear For Faith”
7:30 a.m. Woke up kids to get ready for their games. Showered and got ready for the day. Kids ate cereal. Wiped tables off. Told Meghan she needed to put leggings on because its 43° outside.
Took the garbage out. Dog pooped in the house and Maille picked it up. Thank you Maille!
8:30 (time to go) Meghan came downstairs in shorts and a tank top. Told her to go get pants on. She cried. Filled the water bottles for soccer.
8:40 Hurray, Meghan came down in pants and a long sleeve shirt. Sent her back upstairs to get a coat.
9-1:30 Soccer games.
Ordered pictures for Maille’s habitat project.
Came home while Tim went to get Togo’s for lunch.
2:00 Ate my Togo’s Sandwich.
2:15 Switched the laundry. Went to unload the dishwasher but it never started so started it.
Checked homework folders. Noted parent-teacher conferences.
2:30 Started cleaning the house for Brennan’s birthday party. A swim party in the cold (we are heating the pool).
Cleaned office area.
Cleaned Maille and Meghan’s room.
Changed sheets on kids’ beds.
Washed couch covers.
Swept and mopped upstairs laminate.
Made a pinterest image.
5:30-8:00 Took Brennan to his end of season soccer party
Made kids clean up the mess they made while I was gone.
Put the kids to bed.
9:23 Writing this post.
Although I am still thinking about the fact that I didn’t clean the kitchen yet… I feel pretty good about ALL the things I did do today. The birthday party starts at 1:00 tomorrow. I will clean the kitchen before the party. Oh, yeah…those birthday cards! Dang, it! Sometimes waiting until the last minute is enough to get the small things done. Since 2 of the party guests are recipients of those cards, I’m pretty confident that WILL get done tomorrow.
But until then? I think it’s time to rest. Goodnight 🙂
I decided to make a free printable for you to make your own list of all the things you’ve accomplished today!
Download the printable here.
You know, I’m a big list maker and enjoy drawing a line through things I’ve gotten done, but I’ve never thought of doing it in reverse to remind myself of what actually DID happen. great idea! thanks!
Several people have mentioned the enjoyment of drawing a line through things they’ve done. I love to do that too!
I’ve done this before, too, on those kinds of days. There’s no sense in getting into condemnation that we didn’t do enough. Being a mom, and all that entails is hard work! 🙂
Yes, Kelly that’s so true. As moms we have so many responsibilities and we work so hard.
Looking at all we’re able to do can completely change our perspective. It is so easy to get trapped in the mindset of “never enough” but God tells us we are enough — right in this imperfect moment.
Happy to visit from #raralinkup
That’s so true. I love that even in our imperfect moments when we feel like we haven’t done enough that He says we are enough in and through Him. Thank you so much for sharing!
Such a fun post Valerie! It’s true that we focus on what we didn’t get done instead of what we did accomplish. I don’t think about all the hundreds of little things that I do without even thinking. Thank you for the positive outlook! Visiting from #momentsofhope today 🙂
It was fun to write and eye opening for me. We do so much throughout the day without giving ourselves credit.
I just started a similar practice – journaling a few highlights of the day. Listing everything I do seems daunting, but if I just pick a few it’s totally do-able.
That’s a great practice Courtney and it does sound do-able. Have a great day!
Love this idea, Valerie! I have done this- but never thought about why or how helpful it can be. I’m actually the weirdo who adds items to her to-do list even after they’re completed- just to be able to check them off!! So making a “done” list is right up my alley to improve my perspective on a hard day! Thanks for sharing!
Hi Bethany, That’s funny! There is something about being able to cross something off a list that makes you feel good! I totally get that. Thank you so much for commenting!
Yes, writing it down really helped me change my perspective. Thank you for stopping by today!
So true! My husband does a good job at reminding me to look at what I have accomplished whenever I complain about my undone to-do list. I never thought about writing down everything though. So often I feel like I did nothing all day, but I bet I do more than I think.
I’m sure you do! I would love to see the long lists of accomplishments from others too! It’s amazing how much we actually do and give ourselves little credit for.
Love this idea! I so easily get swamped with all that I didn’t do on my list that I gave up on lists for awhile altogether. I’m currently working on a new organizing system that will hopefully help get me motivated and focused again! But I like this method, and taking time at the end of the day to reflect on what was accomplished is a great way to feel good about the day–and to thank God for making it through one more day! Thanks for sharing!
What organizing system do you use? I think it helps to be organized and I want to be, but sometimes I struggle with how to do it!
Way to put a positive spin on it !! (and I’m tired just reading what you accomplished!!) I far too easily depressed by what didn’t get crossed off the list so I’m digging this new way to look at things. It’s all about perspective right? Awesome Valerie! Thank you!
Lol, I bet you would be tired reading what you’ve done too. You’re right, its all about perspective!
I love this, Valerie! I tend to end the day thinking about all the things I didn’t do. What a great reminder to stay positive and find joy in the things I accomplished! Way to go!!
Thank friend! I try and remember to do this when I feel like like I’m not getting anything done and it always seems to help my perspective.
Great idea! I’m going to try this.
Hello, fellow busy mama! I hope you try it. You’ll be exhausted just from reading your list lol!
Wow! You really did get a lot done! I’ve never thought of doing this, but it’s a great idea. Although I lot of days I think I’d look at it and say…wow…all I did was watch 5 episodes of Gilmore Girls today? Oops. 🙂 The perks of not having kids yet, I guess!
Thanks so much for joining us on the the Alder Collective this week! Pinning, and we hope to see you again next week!
Thank you Kayla! Enjoy it now…your time will come 😉
I can certainly relate! I get discouraged by what still needs to be done, but when I do stop to think through what has been done already, I generally feel better about the day. Great words of encouragement! 🙂
Thank you, Sarah! I have to stop myself and remember that even though my list isn’t checked off, I’ve done all that I can do for the day!
Valarie, I think that is a brilliant. Celebrate what you did instead of being focused on what you didn’t do. Isn’t that what God did each day of Creation?
You’re right, He did! I never even thought of that. What a great point and just another reason to remember to think upon the things that are good instead of the things that make me feel stressed!
What a great idea! I started doing a slimmed down version of this in my new planner from Ruth at Living Well Spending Less. It is so good for me to have record of what I did each day, and I bet I will notice patterns as I do it over time also. Sharing your ideas with all my friends from Twitter. Visiting from the Mommy Moments Linkup.
Thank you so much for your kind comment and for sharing this. I love planners..and I’ll have to check hers out..
Yes, keeping a record really shows us how we have managed our time!
Hi! I found your link-up at Cornerstone Confessions. I loved this post! I am such a list maker, and I can relate to this so much! I’ve just recently started getting up a lot earlier to try and get some more things done throughout the day, and I think I’m going to start making my list of what I’ve already accomplished a priority! I’m sure it will add some peace to my life! Such a simple thing to do that will make such a difference on our outlook! Thanks for sharing!
Kristi @ http://www.kristisaidit.blogspot.com
Hi my fellow list maker! I’m so glad you stopped by. I tried this because at the end of the day I was feeling stressed out and overwhelmed because I still had so much to do. It did really help me to know that Im doing the best that I can do and to relax in the fact that I will get to the others things when I can. Thanks for leaving your blog site. I love discovering new blogs and meeting new friends.
This is such a good idea, especially for those of us who get discouraged by not crossing everything off! Stopping by from the Alder Collective 🙂
It’s easy to get discouraged when we think about all the things we still have to do. But when we look back and realize we did all that we could do in that day, we can smile .
I love to focus on my small victories everyday rather than what I didn’t get done. It’s actually why I started my blog, as a way to help me cope with my chronic illness. I absolutely love this post! Thanks for sharing with Small Victories Sunday Linkup. Pinning to our linkup board and hope you found some great posts to visit this week!
Hi Tanya! I love your link-up and I’m so glad you stopped by. Your link-up is a great way to inspire others to focus on the postive..small victories in their day. I’m so sorry that you suffer with the aches and pains of your illness and I pray that God brings you comfort and extra strength to get through each day. God bless you!
What a great motivator! Love this idea to see how much we actually do get done as Moms each day. A great way to see the positive in our days. Thanks 🙂
Thank you Catherine! Us moms are sure busy and do so much multitasking tthat we often don’t remember everything we accomplished that we can be proud of.
It is so easy to let myself think I didn’t “do anything” today. Yet, a list like this would be amazing. It never helps to get down on myself, just makes me procrastinate more. Great post. #100DaysHappiness
Thank you Karen! We do a lot that we don’t even give ourselves credit for! So glad you stopped by.
I understand your dilemna! I have an ongoing list of things to do that keeps getting pushed forward. If I at least check one thing off a week I’m greatly satisfied!
I love your list! Thank the Lord for productive and not so productive days!
Yes, Lil! And thank the Lord that even on those not so productive days we can still have peace in our hearts through Him!
Hi Valerie… Found you via the Tuesday Talk link up. This “What I Did” list is a great idea! As others commented it brings a positive light to the day. I am going to try this soon. Have a great day!
Thank you for taking the time to comment Laurie! I hope you try it and see the many accomplishments in your day! Blessings to you!
This is a really great idea! Thank you. Stopping by as your neighbor at the #RaRaLinkup. 🙂
Hi Katie, It’s always great to see your name ;). Thank you for commenting!
I’ve been thinking about this lately too, Valerie! When I cross things off my list I no longer see them, I only see what is undone. When my husband asks me how my day went I am now trying to list off things, no matter how small or “routine” that DID get done rather than bemoaning everything that’s left! Certainly helps maintain a more positive and grateful perspective.
I agree Abi. Plus, I think we do a lot of things that we never bother putting on a list to even cross off. I always love your visits, so thank you for stopping by.
You are so right! We need to focus on the things we do more instead of the things we don’t! Sharing! <3
Yes, Lindsey! And we do way more than we think! Thank you for sharing and stopping by!
I have loaded the dishwasher, put the soap in, and then I walked away without pressing start. Gah! It’s super frustrating to open it up the next morning to find dirty dishes! I think we Mama’s have too much going on inside our heads to focus sometimes! 😉
Lol, I know! We are thinking about so many things at once! It’s good to know that other moms go through the same things! Thank you for commenting.
I’m am so glad to know I’m not the only person who starts the dishwasher only to find it didn’t actually start. Ha! I’m so glad I’m not alone. Writing a list of all you’ve accomplished is a great idea. I will add things to my list and mark them off if I accomplish the task and they aren’t on it. Thanks for linking through Faith Filled Friday.
One List Maker to Another
Lol, Jennifer…I wasn’t sure anyone would catch that part. The “not actually starting the dishwasher” happens more than I care to admit…lol. Too many buttons maybe? I’m so glad you stopped by!
I love this! There are days when I don’t accomplish everything on my to-do list, and I start to get down on myself and think that it was a wasted day. Then I think back on what I did accomplish, and realize that I really did do quite a bit even though those things weren’t on my to-do list. I hope the pool party was a success!
We do a lot that we would never put on our to-do list! I’m so glad you stopped by. The pool party went well…and the rain came down when the party was over. 😉
This is a great idea! Focus on the positive. This truly speaks to my heart. Thank you for sharing! I just love it. I’ll be starting this today!
Jess, Sweet Little Ones
I’m so glad you stopped by Jess! I hope it helps you see all the tasks you accomplish during the day. 😉
This is why I blog. It’s an accomplishment you can see, like my list.
Very true Kristy! It is nice to see the things we have worked so hard at. Thank you for visiting!
This does help to see what has been accomplished rather than what has not! I love it 🙂 I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving, Val!
Blessings and smiles,
We accomplish a lot don’t we Lori? I hope you had a lovely Thanksgiving too. Hugs!
Love this post, Valerie. What a concept! So often I make lists and add things I’ve already done just so I can cross it off! But this is a way to feel “accomplished” without obsessing about the things I haven’t finished.
I also loved reading about a “day in your life”. 🙂 Sharing this week on social media! This is too important not to spread the news.
Hello friend! Thank you so much for reading and sharing Alison! I’d love to hear “a day in the life of Alison” with your busy school and blogging schedule!
I’m thrilled by your idea. A list of what I accomplished sounds pretty motivating to me. I think I’m going to make one right now. I’m tired of looking at the long list of things I still have to do. This idea might just inspire me to keep moving. Thanks!
So often we accomplish things that we would never put on a to-do list. I’m so glad you want to try this. I hope you feel accomplished after seeing all that you have done. Thank you for taking the time to leave such a kind comment!
A great idea. But sometimes you just have to stop, enjoy the moment and recognize that if the beds don’t get made or the cards don’t get mailed, it is OK. You will sleep in those beds again very soon and if necessary, text the birthday people. It is the thought that counts anyway.
God bless you on your journey.
So true Cindly! We have to learn to enjoy life in the moment and learn to let some things go. I have been working on this in my life. Life is too short to stress about the small stuff. Thank you so much for visiting!