A Little Story About a Doll…
This past year, my 6 year old saved her money for a relatively expensive item: An American Girl Doll.
She worked hard doing little chores and saving her allowance. After many months, she finally had enough. So our entire family had a special night out for her. We went to the American Girl store, she picked out her doll and we all ate at the restaurant.
She was so proud. We were so proud.
She just as easily could have blown all that money on the Target $1 section. She could have a collection of broken toys that she cares nothing about. She could have spent all that money on candy and after 5 minutes of chewing have nothing to show for all her hard work.
But instead, our entire family has a memory and she has a doll she loves that she could very well pass on to her own children someday.
A testament of her hard work and perseverance toward a goal.
What This Story Has To Do With To Do Lists
Most people use a to do list to get things done, but having a to do list without having a goal is like driving without a destination. It uses up your energy and you never get anywhere.
There is an infinite amount of stuff we can put on our to do list, but our goal isn’t just to do stuff. Our goal is to fulfill Gods purpose for us.
So before we talk about how to use our to do lists let’s quickly discuss mission statements and goals.
Yay! Aren’t you so excited?!
1. Mission Statements
Moms need mission statements just as much as businesses do. We could spend 100% of our time cleaning up messes and never teach kindness or how to make a mean grilled cheese sandwich.
Just as with money, you can spend time or invest it.
If you have a mission statement, you know where to invest your time.
If you don’t have a Mission Statement yet, I encourage you to download the free eBook – Mission Statements for Moms and write your first draft. You can (and should) tweak it later, but for now, just get something down on paper.
2. Yearly Goals
Based on your mission statement, what are your goals for this year? Just outline one goal for each section of your statement. It is vital that you keep things focused and simple.
You can think of Mission Statements, Goals and To Do Lists like an ever narrowing funnel, taking broad hopes and channeling them into small doable tasks.
3. Pareto’s Principle
There is an economic idea called Pareto’s Principle. It states that 20 percent of a country’s citizens provide 80 percent of it’s income.
This law has popularly been applied to productivity. 20 percent of what you do provides 80 percent of the results.
The Framework For a To Do List
What mission statements and goals do is provide a framework for your to do lists to help you identify that 20 percent so that you’re not spending you day doing the 80 percent things that have little return.
Having a clear purpose narrows your focus and only allows those tasks that will be stepping stones to your goals.
The majority of your tasks should correlate back to one of these life vision elements. If a task doesn’t correlate back, you should seriously question whether it actually needs to be on your list.
Come back on Wednesday when we’ll talk about the nitty gritty details of to do lists.
Riveting like the Dewey Decimal system, I know. But do try to get some sleep between now and then. Mmmmk?
Update: Read The Rest of the Series…
1. Tips for Moms: How To Get Things Done
2. Mom Tips: How To Get Things Done, Pt. 2
3. Mom Tips: How To Get Things Done, Pt. 3
4. Mom Tips: Routines vs Tasks – Why You Need To Know The Difference
5. How To Be Awesome