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  • Writer's pictureRobert Norton

The tyranny of the to-do list

Updated: Jun 24, 2022

Some days go so fast that it feels like I get sucked into the workday in the morning and spit back out at night. My brain gets sluggish by early evening, and I can barely muster the energy to keep up with dinner conversation. Instead of connecting with my family, I find myself zoned out, reliving minor decisions or mentally cataloging tomorrow's checklist.

As one of my favorite poets, Samantha Reynolds, so eloquently writes, it takes intention to disrupt the assembly line of lists that never stop.

Source: Instagram @bentlilly / Samantha Reynolds

Ironically, I've found that one solution for fighting the tyranny of the to-do list is to create a different kind of list, a Good To Do list. Each week, I put a post-it note on the page in my notebook directly opposite my to-do list. It reminds me of the little things I can do to create speed bumps that slow down my day and invite reflection, creativity, and connection. This week's list includes walking and piano practice.

How are you punctuating your day?

Today and everyday, I'm wishing you commas of affection, exclamation points of creativity, and periods of reflection.


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