A picture of my coffee on the table.

You are worth so much more than the size of your crossed off to do list. But goodness knows those to do lists can also help in the time of decluttering or other pressing matters or with bigger plans or goals (I’m working on something big right now and a simple to do list is so helpful and this planning process I’m using for goals).

This week it’s …Simplify Your Life Week. It’s “observed during August of each year. This holiday encourages those who need to refocus their lives and declutter – that doesn’t just mean objects. The idea is to eliminate anything that causes stress or anxiety”. As a part of this simplify your life week, I’m joining with a bunch of other amazing simple living ladies on Instagram to share ways to simplify our lives, with my topic being simplifying the to do list. Today on the blog, I’m sharing 10 ways to simplify your to do list.

  1. Keep things simple. Have lots of complicated tasks? Break them down into simple daily tasks for your to do list.
  2. Focus on three main things or less is what is recommended by some. This blog, written by a minimalist leader, Joshua Becker, talks about the three item to do list.
  3. Write down your list in advance, ideally the night before. It allows for direction and clarity going forward.
  4. Do a brain dump if you have a massive to do list and then set it aside to reflect and look on in the future.
  5. Use a simple prioritizing method for tasks that helps you to do the priority tasks first. Number them (I use letters) from most to least important. I learned this method from the book Eat that Frog! You can also read about this method on my blog here.
  6. Move nonpriority tasks to the weekend (or for quieter days). For me that would be things such as makes tweaks to my website.
  7. Take time to reassess to do list tasks. Ask yourself if they are in line with who you are, your values, who you want to become. See my blog on values about how to start discovering yours.
  8. Set time amounts for to do list tasks. Sometimes, I know for me, I can write too much on my to do list only because I am not always great at time estimating. Taking a few minutes to think about how much time a task takes will give you a better idea of what is doable for you to write down on your to do list and to simplify your to do list. When I started tracking how long things took me, they usually were twice as long as I thought.
  9. Pick a place to keep your daily to do list. Written is best. But if written is not your thing, use something. Anything. Consistently. And in one spot vs. all over the place (i.e. hello sticky notes that I used to lose all over the house). I now use the bullet journaling method so my to do list stays in one place, where it needs to be.
  10. And. Default to a bare minimum “to do list” day when you have to throw out the to do list. Because sometimes even a simple to do list needs to be thrown out. I know it does here sometimes having four kids in the home!

PS if creating a simple to do list and planning is a struggle for you, you may like what my mail list received for their freebie Friday recently: The simple guide to finding more time + an attached worksheet. You can email me at simplehomemom@gmail.com and I can email you that freebie directly if you’d like that.

Hi, I’m Kelly! I’m a mother of four children - three boys, one toddler girl - and our family lives on the beautiful east coast of Canada. I’m a past elementary teacher, turned stay at home, work at home mom eight years ago after I had my second child. I’ve found that the busier I’ve become and as my children age, that it’s become even more important to figure out what is most important to me and us as a family. Living a simpler lifestyle has helped us in so many ways in our home life - from better routines to faster tidying up times. It has been through my children that I have been inspired to learn how to effectively manage my time and to simplify in all areas of my home and life. I enjoy helping busy moms simplify home life by teaching flexible planning methods and skills. Enjoyed this blog and think it would be helpful to others? I'd love if you shared it. Thank you!