#72: Stop Overwhelm – The 1 Thing Your To-do List is Missing

Mar 23, 2023 | Podcast

List making is essential if you want to feel like you’re getting things done in life, but there’s one thing that may be missing from your list that can actually make life easier for you.

Check out the Daily Rhythms Tracker to help you begin to uncover what action to take and when based on your own personal energetic rhythms.

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Why List Making is Essential

Writing things on a list clears out space in your brain so you can stay focused on what’s really essential and necessary in the present moment.

Even when you take action on something and it’s not on your list, it can be helpful to actually write it on your list and check it off or cross it off as a way of communicating to your brain that that item no longer needs to be taking up space in your mind by trying to remember if you have done it or not. 

The simple action of crossing something off your list clears out mind clutter and actually aligns with the 3rd and 4th phases of the energetic rhythms cycle.


Clarity and Overwhelm

Making lists is in a sense a way of journaling and helps you find clarity in situations (as any journaling often does) and stops the overwhelm that tends to creep in when you’re a do-it-all warrior of a person.  Even if you don’t have that warrior mentality, you might be living in your brain too much, overthinking life and feeling the weight of what can seem to be endless thoughts or demands. 


List-making brings focus to situations that seem bigger than what you can handle.

Brain Dump

A good practice is to do a brain dump at least weekly.  This is where you write down everything in your mind that you know needs your attention…from needing to buy toilet paper to finishing that giant project that might be sitting on your desk.  By getting all the things out of your mind and on paper, you immediately free up space and can get to work deciding what has earned the real estate in your mind and what needs to go.


Keep it, Delegate it, Eliminate it

Your list can then be divided into these 3 categories so the essential things get your attention or someone you delegate to and the others are eliminated (or possibly just shifted to a different season of your life).

Once you know what’s essential, you get to decide who takes it on, and this is where the one thing that’s missing comes in.  



List making can be a crucial tool when it comes to stopping overwhelm, but it can also be the source of overwhelm if you aren’t optimizing the way you format your list.


To know where you are in your Energetic Rhythms Cycle, download the Daily Rhythms Tracker.

Join the Energetic Rhythms for Intentional Living community here.

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More episodes like this one:

#43: The Power of Letting Go with Dave Weesner
#52: Intention-setting for Focus in Life, Energetic Rhythms Phase 1
#54: Taking Action and Letting It Go, Energetic Rhythms Phase 3
#55:  When to Wrap Up & Celebrate, Energetic Rhythms Phase 4 


Disclosure:  Because I like connecting others with resources that I have used and found to work well in my life, I want to be completely transparent with you.  Some of the links within this post are affiliate links from Amazon; as an Amazon Associate I earn  from qualifying purchases at no additional cost to you. I only promote products that align with my values and with what I truly believe to work, not because of the commission I receive on them. So if you do decide to purchase something from one of these links, thank you!

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