Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Tortoise Tuesday - Reverse To Do List (and a project update)

How often do we all look at our to do list with things left undone only to feel discouraged.  I know I do it far too often.  I am a list maker, an organizer, a label crazy girl.  These parts of me serve me well and I get great enjoyment from orderliness.  But, these things can also weigh me down... entangling me with unrealistic expectations.  I often do not see all I have accomplished,  but rather all I haven't.

In light of my hope to be more tortoise-like and less hare-like, I am coming up with ways to help me change my perspective.  One way I have found to adjust my focus is by reflecting and using what I call "a reverse to do list".  In those moments when I am most overwhelmed and frustrated by things left undone, reflecting helps me to see things differently.  I see what I have done and where I have spent my time

Here's the difference:

My To Do List for This Past Weekend

~ finish painting trim and wainscoting in my kitchen
~ exercise twice
~ write three drafts of blog posts
~clean house
~sew skirts for Easter
~ cook
~ clean out my fridge
~ clean the house
~ use the china for Easter dinner
~ bead a bracelet
~ set up the patio
~ buy Easter egg decorating kit

What I Actually Did:

~ finished shopping for my son's birthday presents

~ sewed two skirts

~ laundry

~ cooked Easter dinner

~ worshipped on Easter

~ watched a movie with my family 

~ decorated Easter eggs (with only green and orange because I never did get the kit)

~ spent time talking with my family

~ took pictures

~ made memories

~ ate Easter candy

~ walked twice (once at a beautiful bike path I have never been to before)

(if you look closely at the graffiti on this building, it says Jesus)

~ sat around the fire pit, roasted marshmallows, and made s'smores.

~ prayed
~ read a good book

My house didn't get completely cleaned.  The trim and painting are still not complete.  We didn't use china for our Easter dinner.  My bracelet needs to be restrung.  My fridge needs to be cleaned.  I have dust bunnies.

We sat around the fire pit making s'mores while some of the patio furniture remained in the shed.
We had a delicious dinner that reminded me of Easters past at my Polish grandmother's house - no china needed.  We laughed as we decorated Easter eggs.  We cuddled while watching The Wizard of Oz.  We enjoyed a beautiful afternoon walking at the bike path.  We worshipped Our Risen Lord. 
While I will never completely let go of my to do lists,  reflecting on how I spend my days sure lets me see what is really important... experiences and relationships that are worth oh so much more than checking off items on my to do list. 
So, take a moment and instead of being dismayed by all of the things left on your to do list; choose to see where you are really spending your time!
Project Update:   By the way, I started painting my trim and wainscoting in the kitchen 2 weeks ago... as of this morning, I am more than half done.  Not as far along as I would like but it is progress!
Praying you have many blessings and much joy!

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