I like to make lists. But then I have a problem: I am so caught up in getting the list done and checking it off that I don’t spend any time actually enjoying what I’m doing.
This creates a lot of stress in my life because I am rarely present and mindful. Instead, I just think about getting it done and over with. It drains enjoyment out of anything to think that way. When the biggest thrill in my life is checking something off, that’s a problem.
I don’t need to accomplish everything on my to-do list. It’s not the point of life. I don’t want to have a lifetime of just accomplishing stuff that doesn’t always matter that much. I want to develop relationships. I want to build up a home that is filled with love, instead of just a home that is neatly organized and clean.
Instead of just cooking a meal to get it over with, it’s so much better to slow down a bit and take the time to cook a nice meal and even make it fancy or different. Instead of just rushing through schoolwork, it’s better to focus on the problems and the papers and to recognize how you are learning and progressing. Smiling through exercise helps me do more. Laughing with my kids helps them feel loved.
Today I made a really long to-do list. There is no way at all that I am going to get everything done on it. But that’s sort of the point. I don’t need a perfect, productive day. I just need to live and enjoy all the interruptions. Sometimes I need to learn how to leave things undone, and keep living off of what I value instead of just trying to be a productivity machine.