Make a Not-To-Do List

The assignment for this past week in the year of loving ourselves fearlessly was to Make a Not-To-Do List. j was inspired for the assignment for this week by Danielle Laporte, who says that when we strive to do what we really want (love, are passionate about), the things we decide NOT to do are sometimes just as important as the things we decide to start or continue doing.

My boyfriend and I went on a trip to the Romanian seaside during our annual leave. It was sooo good to finally have a vacation! I said this assignment came in very handy, and that I’d write my list as soon as we arrived.
However, after turning on Skype for a few minutes on the second day of my annual leave, I was forced into staying online and sending some work e-mails/waiting for replies. The what I thought would be a few minutes turned into about an hour and a half! I was so frustrated about it, I decided to write my Not-To-Do List immediately.

So here it is, my vacation Not-To-Do List:

  • Don’t check work e-mail
  • Don’t turn on Skype
  • Don’t check e-mail except twice a day
  • Don’t get upset with Pixel for being stressed out (we took him with us)
  • Don’t spend more than ten minutes on Instagram or playing Ice Age Village
  • Don’t get upset for some vacation plans (visiting something, staying up late, going for a walk) not working out
  • Don’t stay up too late, reading

As you know, I’m currently reading Gretchen Rubin’s book, “Better than before”. In it, and on her blog, too, she talks about how she makes a list of the things she keeps putting off, and doing them during what she named Power Hour. Power Hour is an hours time to accomplish those one-time tasks that weigh on our mind, but could be—and probably already have been—indefinitely postponed.

While I didn’t really get these things done during only an hour, here’s what I included on my list of things to get done before hitting the road:

  • Update Windows
  • Finish two sewing projects (one finished, the other is half-done since it needs more supplies)
  • Clear cobwebs from corners
  • Place unused blankets and pillows into underbed storage bags
  • Rearrange books on the nightstand
  • Take summer clothes to mom’s, bring back fall clothes
  • Clean “50 books to read before you die” stainless steel bookmark
  • Sharpen pencil eyeliners

The assignment for Week 40 is to Start a New Practice.
Ever since watching Matt Cutts’s TED talk “Try Something New for 30 Days,” j has been enamored with the idea of changing your life incrementally, one small, sustainable habit at a time. “As Matt says, you can add something to your life (biking to work each day) or you can take something out (smoking); the key is that it’s small enough for you to truly get the feel of it in one week.”
I think this pairs well with my reading “Better than before”; let’s see what practice I’ll start.

How was your week? Did you write a Not-To-Do List? What was on it? In case you haven’t written one already, feel free to share a few items off it below in the comments. I’d love to know what the things you could stop to make room for more self-love are in your world.
And of course, feel free to share a Power Hour list, too! I’m really interested in what you guys put off doing and how similar our lists might be.

PS: If you’re interested in joining us, you don’t have to have the e-guide to play, but if you’d like it, you can buy it in the shop.

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3 Responses to “Make a Not-To-Do List”

  1. Such a fun topic — everything I don’t like to do and everything that I’m avoiding.

    Let’s see, things I’ve been putting off: 1.) Picking out a new microwave 2.) Picking up the already paid for sink & other items from a store that came in *weeks* ago 3.) Calling and making an appointment for my dog to get washed and her hair cut 4.) Calling and making an appointment to get a massage (I called after typing this because I realized it was ridiculous! 5.) Packing the house up for our remodel because it’s a lot of work! 6.) Getting on a website and changing the date of my daughter’s SAT 7.) Signing up my daughter for SAT lessons 8.) Looking into getting her signed up for the ACT 8.) Figuring out how I’m going to get to the airport from Philadelphia to my AirBnB rental 9) Figuring out what to do with all my time in Philadelphia because my friends aren’t as available as I thought they were going to be 10) Mailing out my friend’s birthday card 11.) Sorting through what’s in the cabinet in the kitchen that’s above the desk because it’s overwhelming and there’s no good place to move the stuff when it’s sorted. 12) Start planning any trips to be taken in November or December, 13.) Making a driver’s appointment for my middle daughter to get more time behind the wheel. 14) Redoing my entire blog 15) Writing two posts per week for my blog.

    Essentially, my list boils down to organizing, packing, planning, making calls, and writing. I wonder how many power hours it will take to follow-through on all of these?

    Loved the video you shared. I made a change on August 25th (the day my girls went back to school) where as soon as I drop my darling daughters off at school, I head straight to the gym. I do not go home at all because once I get home, I won’t go anywhere until it’s time to pick them up again when school is over. Now I go to the gym 5 days per week in addition to walking my dog, Pearl, 3-4 times per week. Also, I made it a priority to sit in the sauna for as long as possible (up to 40-50 minutes) every day because of this article: http://fitness.mercola.com/sites/fitness/archive/2015/03/13/benefits-using-sauna.aspx Those two little changes have made a huge impact in how I feel and how well I am sleeping!

    • Oh, Cathie! That’s a lot of things you’ve masterfully put off :) If you set your mind to is though, I’m sure you could do these in a few Power Hours.
      Like, the phone calls could be done in one hour, I think and maybe squeeze in some internet time, too (# 3, 13, 6, 8) You could do some online research for the microwave for example which could also fit in there or pair it with planning your Philadelphia trip (# 1, 8/9, 9). Picking up stuff from the store might take an hour, depending on where the store is you could also mail that birthday card (# 2, 10), but the packing-type stuff would probably be more than just an hour… I feel for you on those ones!

      What a great change regarding your gym appointments being moved! Habits are easier kept when they’re at least somewhat convenient, and you seem to have found the perfect solution to keep to it this way! Many times it’s also easier if we can associate a habit with something else we might look at as a starting point. That’s why many people make New Year’s resolutions, but I think that school starting is just as good a time to make changes in households with kids.
      Plus, very healthy habits to incorporate into your week. I’m so happy to hear you’re feeling much better and sleeping better, too!

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