I’m a list girl.
I make endless lists – grocery lists, to do lists, lists of stuff I need to do now and stuff I want to do later, project lists, lists of action items, lists of all my lists.
Most of those lists are made for work projects. I’m mighty organized and focused when it comes to work. I think most of us are. But when it comes to home and life projects, I don’t give them the same attention and focus as I do work projects. But why not? Life goals are as much as, if more, important than work goals. The potential outcomes will positively impact everything, including work. So why do I shortchange myself and give more prominence to my work performance than my life performance?
I know I’m not alone in this. I know many, many people, who when it comes to work, they will outline objectives, develop strategies, create plans and assign duties and prioritize so that they are successful. But somehow, they feel as if they can surmount incredible obstacles and challenges and succeed in their day to day lives without outlining their long term objectives, strategies, and an action plan that will help them get there.
I’m here to tell you that if you apply the same strategies to your home life as you do in your work life, you will find you are much more successful. This applies to long term goals as well daily ones. For example, yesterday, my goal was to clean my house and do all my laundry. Had I had the whole day to devote to it, it most certainly would have been an achievable one, but I had errands to run and grocery shopping to do, and I was given the opportunity to run, so I took it. By the time I got home and started cleaning the house and putting laundry in it was 5pm. I knew at that point I wasn’t going to complete that project, so I made a plan, right then and there. My goal was to get both things accomplished and I wasn’t going to be able to do either that night. So instead of staying up until 2am to finish both, I did dishes, dusted and wiped down all of the rooms in the house. I decided to do everything else except vacuum and mop. I knew I was taking a rest day from working out today so I would leave that for tonight. With the laundry, I vowed to do all of the laundry I had sorted and left in piles on my floor. That way, I would be able to vacuum that floor the following day and would only have a couple of loads left to do.
That new plan made the project seem more do-able and not so intimidating, and when I got home tonight I was able to finish up both without much trouble. By simply sitting down and mapping out how I had to tackle the project to get it done in a reasonable timeline, as efficiently as possible, I was able to accomplish it and keep my sanity. As a result, I have a pretty clean house, clothes to wear this week and no guilt as I pack up my gym bag for tomorrow.
Your life is worth the time and dedication you give to your work. So when you’re thinking about how on earth you can possibly get everything done, think about the strategies you employ when you’re handed a project at work. Chances are, you are either given or identify a goal and you develop a plan to achieve that goal as efficiently as possible. Perhaps you delegate some responsibilities – if you can do that, by all means, do. You will be surprised at how much even small, daily accomplishments mean when you’re working toward a larger goal. You are worth the work.