I have a daily planner and a goals planner, as well as many to-do lists. I have to-do lists written on scraps of paper, in email drafts, and in my planner. Sometimes it feels like they are everywhere and sometimes my to-do list gets a bit out of control. It’s so easy to just keep adding things to my list and then not actually do any of them. There’s only so much time in the day and in the week!
So I decided to create a not-to-do list so that I could prioritize what I want to actually spend my time doing. I feel like there are so many distractions in my life. Most of these are things that are non-essential and not worth my time and I no longer want to waste my time and energy on them.
Here are 10 things I am NOT going to do:
1. Read every email or newsletter that pops into my inbox.
I follow a lot of blogs and newsletters and a lot of times I feel obligated to read or look at every email that comes into my inbox. Sometimes it feels like I am spending over an hour every day checking my email. That is just too much time spent on this task. Honestly, I miss before email was a thing because now it seems like it has turned into just another thing to check. I am going to use that delete button and delete anything I don’t want to read. And if I don’t read something, it’s okay.
2. Worry about having the perfect summer.
I feel like every year there is so much pressure to have the BEST SUMMER EVER! Well, I don’t know if I will ever have the best summer ever. But I can have the best summer for me. If that means going out to one tourist attraction in the summer or going out to ten tourist attractions, that is what I am going to do. I don’t know why we place such emphasis on having the best summer. Maybe because it’s vacation time and we feel we have to get the best value for our vacations?
3. Worry about what other people think.
I am going to wear what I want and not worry about what other people think of me. I am going to eat by myself and sit by myself and not obsess about what people are thinking of me. The older I get, the more I don’t care about what other people think.
4. Not take a break.
I am going to take breaks. You should always take breaks, whether it is a break during the day or a break from work or a break from people. Breaks recharge us and I have to always remember that!
5. Listen to every podcast episode I subscribe to.
I subscribe to many podcasts and feel like I have to listen to every episode that is put out. But, I am only going to listen to episodes that sound interesting. If an episode doesn’t intrigue me or it is about something I am not into or don’t want to learn about, I am not going to listen to it. It’s okay to not listen to everything.
6. Scroll the internet.
I waste so much time scrolling the internet and social media. Granted, I feel like I am actually learning something when I scroll on Twitter because I follow a lot of news accounts. But there are other social media that, when I am done scrolling, I wonder where the time went and it definitely feels like wasted time. I don’t want to feel like I am wasting time. Some social media is a good use of time, like when I am catching up with people, but it can quickly turn into a time suck which is what I want to avoid.
7. Worry about something I said or did a year ago.
How many times have I been lying in bed thinking about something that happened in high school or 5 years ago? I can’t change the past so I don’t know why I keep thinking about it. I would love to not worry about what happened in the past and learn to move on.
8. Read books I am not into.
I feel like I’ve gotten a lot better with this one. Life is too short to read bad books so if I am not into a book I am going to stop reading it. I don’t care if it is the best seller that everyone is talking about or if someone said it was great. If I do not love a book, I am not going to read it.
9. Worry about missing a workout or walk.
I try to go out and go for a walk or do some sort of workout every day. But sometimes it doesn’t happen. Maybe I was super busy that day or maybe I am not feeling like I want to do anything. So many times I beat myself up because I didn’t go for a walk. But I am going to stop doing that because it’s okay to take some rest days and it’s okay to take some time for myself. You don’t have to do something every day for it to be beneficial.
10. Be available 24/7.
With smartphones and all the technology available now, it is so easy to answer every call and every message right away. But honestly? Sometimes I don’t want to be bothered. Like if I am out shopping, sometimes I want to focus on my shopping and not on the conversation in my ear. So I am only answering the phone when I want to talk. I am only replying to messages when I want to. If it takes an hour or two, that’s okay. People got along perfectly fine without smartphones 20 years ago. It was perfectly acceptable to leave a message on someone’s answering machine and then they would call you back when they got home.
That’s my not-to-list!