When Your To Do List is Too Much

My 'to do' list is an experiment in wishful thinking. There are things on there from a couple of years ago. Every day there are more things. The great thing about living in this world is also the greatest challenge; there are so many things to experience...so many things 'to do.'

A while back I realized that an equally important list for me is the 'to be' list. It's not about goals, activities, or accomplishments; it's about presence, grounding and renewal. With all of my interests, I'm constantly doing, often to the point of overwhelm. Originally these moments of overwhelm were the reason I created the 'to be' list in the first place, as a reminder to check in with my core being from time to time. What's happened since is that I focus more on the 'to be' list and the 'to do' list isn't so overwhelming, and by golly, those 'to do' things are getting done more frequently and to a high level of satisfaction.

The 'to be' list isn't set in stone. Some days it's about being more present and engaged with my family. Some days it's about being highly focused on one task until it's finished. Some days it's being OK with the ride from role to role. My baseline state on the to be list is calm, centered, and conscious. When I feel myself starting to slide away from there in my thinking, feeling and doing, it's often enough to just look at those qualities on my 'to be' list, and I start to feel more at ease.

So when you create your 'to do' list, don't forget the 'to be' list along with it. Each one informs and supports the other.