Nice Life Reminders Pip-Life

Has your to-do list ever taken over your soul like some sort of Kondo-esque dementor?

milligram and meet me at mikes pip

Has your to-do list ever taken over your soul and controlled your mind like some sort of organisational dementor? Sort of like a Kondo with teeth and giant tentacles that seeks to remind you that YOU HAVE THINGS TO DO. Or like a Tonia Todman gone wrong, tucking you and your world in within an inch of its life?

Honestly, mine sometimes doooooo.

I only realised it today when my to do list slipped from helpful to … controlling. 

I was just hanging out listening to the radio, eating cheese, thinking about stuff as I drank a glass of very cold riesling …

And I wanted to write down a thing that I thought of.

And then I thought of a another thing to write down. And then my brain rang an unfamiliar alarm.

And I warned myself that I don’t need to keep track of every little thing. And that a thing on the list is not a must do. It’s just a might do. Because sometimes thing change and the thing you had to do shifts a little or a lot and that is OKAY. And also I WROTE THE THING. I am allowed to NOT DO THE THING.

In about 3 seconds flat I realised that to-do lists can be very mindcontrol-y and annoying if you let them be that way. And that made me feel HAPPY and like I am actually on the mend.

Don’t get me wrong. I love lists and they have actually 1000 percent saved my sanity for so many years, when I didn’t really know what to do next, such was my sadness and struggle.  My to-do lists helped me to push on and sort out my days. I love them so much.

But when you are NOT in sadness and struggle. When you are feeling grateful and okay and semi-delighted and a bit like things are a little better … you can rethink the very driven/borderline obsessive to do list urge a little bit, I reckon.

You might not need the list to wrangle your anxiety and focus your foggy day. You might not need that dot point map of your days so keenly anymore.

Perhaps you can dip your toe in the less list-y life and feel a little bit of spontaneous sunshine and swishy pond and breezy tree and just random mind wandering.

You can just be where you are now. With nothing … to do this minute.

What I am saying – and my boss Ella would call this ‘burying the lead’ – is that to-do lists can be so helpful, but they can also snap you out of the perhaps-quite-pleasant-at-this-moment-nice-time and urge you to hurry on and schedule all the things.

Learning to balance my to-dos with my no-need-to-do-a-thing-right-now is my new to-do.

Oh. Whoops. Shit. Well. You know what I mean. I’m TRYING.

I’m going to make an effort to look at my to-dos as my to-maybe-dos and I’m going to more enjoy reflecting on my to-dones and where things are right now.

You are so welcome for this babble. No problem.

x pip


PS: I’m back on the blog now! I handed in my book and I have some space back in my life for my beloved blog. Yayyyyy! Thank you for waiting for me!


  • Reply
    Emma-Kate Croghan
    April 12, 2019 at 10:14 PM

    I was having this almost exact thought. Then I opened my email and read this! It is always good to know your not alone and other great humans are having similar experiences!

  • Reply
    April 12, 2019 at 2:23 PM

    Oh so timely Pip! I have become a sort of slave to my to-do list and last night had a total melt-down caused by it. You are right on the money – some things can be maybe-to-do. I’m going away for a lovely break in Tassie, and I got completely stressed knowing I can’t get everything done on my list before I go. I’m sure holidays aren’t supposed to work like that are they. Thanks for the reminder. Congrats on getting your book done and great to see you back here 🙂

  • Reply
    April 11, 2019 at 11:20 PM

    I just had a total A-Ha moment reading this Pip. I am a list lover. They help clear my overactive brain, they make me feel on track & in control. Until they don’t. I’ve come to realise over the last few months that I’ve lost the ability to relax because I CONSTANTLY have things I think I SHOULD/WANT/NEED to be doing. Suddenly it began to feel problematic & annoying. I felt so tired all the time & was getting cranky because I never felt like I had any down time. This post has made me think maybe it’s my constant need to tick things off my list that’s causing these feelings *face palm*
    And congrats on handing in your book! You know I’ll be preordering as soon as I can! Also, I had no idea that you were working another job while writing a book, I thought writing the book WAS your job!!! You deserve extra kudos for for getting all the stuff done because it ain’t bloody easy. X

    • Reply
      April 12, 2019 at 7:22 AM

      We are twins with our list angst!! I am sure there are more of us out there!
      Yes I have had a full time job for 2.5 years! Writing for Babyology. So I have to do my book in the mornings before and evenings after work and on the weekends. It’s not easy but it’s doable! Thank you for piping up!! Love to you!! Lemme know how the list rethink goes!

  • Reply
    April 11, 2019 at 8:03 PM

    Yay pip, I’m beyond excited that you are back in this space, but even more so that you sound as though you are back in your life as well.
    A few years ago my life was given a huge a shake up, at the time of crisis point to-do lists saved me, but then, oh dear when I wasn’t looking they became my inner mean girls external access to me. I no longer have a to-do list, just a list of appointments and commitments I’ve made that include others, everything else happens when/if I think of it. I don’t know what I’ve forgotten to do so it’s working for me. ?
    Cheers Kate

    • Reply
      April 12, 2019 at 7:25 AM

      It’s been such a busy time because I have to squeeze book writing and blog writing around a full time job. Obviously something had to give – the blog, for a wee while – but now I’m over the hump! Hoorah!!

      I love hearing about your to-do list experiences – I think they are great and also they can be not great. It just depends on how you work them. Thank you for commenting Kate!! xxx

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