I don’t know a person who isn’t busy. Everyone’s got a to do list a mile long. I’ve attended several workshops on living a life that makes you happy and almost always one of the main points they make is the importance of setting long-term, short-term, and daily goals. I used to use a to do system that looked something like this:
So obviously I never actually wrote a to do list like that, but I just had a mental list that was a lot like that and it is pretty comical to think that would ever work. I always knew I had a lot to do, but all that stuff was just jumbled all together and I always felt overwhelmed.
So since that wasn’t working and after attending a workshop that reminded and motivated me to live a more purposeful and meaningful life, I got an app that helped me keep track of tasks and goals. That definitely made me more efficient, but after awhile, I started to recognize a trend. Almost every day, things came up and made it so I couldn’t complete everything I had planned. And the majority of the time, the things that came up had to do with being a caregiver to a child with seizures, muscle pain, therapies, IEP’s, sensory issues, medical procedures, medical appointments, etc., etc., etc. If you’re reading this, I’m sure you understand.
One day I was feeling discouraged about all I wasn’t doing and my compassionate and wise friend reminded me all that I had accomplished. I realized she was right! I had been focusing on what I wasn’t doing, but not giving myself credit for what I had done! We joked about writing down my ta da list at the end of the day just like I write down a to do list at the beginning of the day! This was just a joke at the time, but it’s something I think of often! I have never actually written down a ta da list, but my mind set has changed. Instead of looking at things unchecked on my to do list, I smile and reflect on my ta da list! This has made all the difference in the world! Being a mom comes with its challenges, special needs or not. We should all celebrate what we’re able to do! Even if that means staying in your pajamas one day, snuggling on the couch, and reading books. Even if that means going on a walk with the family one day instead of hitting it hard at the gym because you realize you haven’t spent much time together lately. Even if that means letting the dishes go one night so you can fall asleep snuggling your child who might need a little extra attention. And yes these are very specific and real life experiences just from this week! There was a time when I would have thought I had failed at my to do list this week, but now I’m able to smile at my sweet, happy kids and think, “Ta da!”