In the morning it feels as if I can get everything done.
I rise, thinking that I’m super mom, the one who will tackle her list by eleven, and then spend the rest of the day in creative endeavors. We’ll bake our bread — gluten free, of course, and knit, and write letters, and refold laundry, and prepare an amazing dinner for ourselves and to share, and end the evening retelling the day in a brilliant one act play.
And then the morning comes.
And then real life happens. There are diaper changes, and laundry that is still waiting to be folded, and four days of math work to correct, and not enough cereal for breakfast, and last minute supplies to be found, and no idea what I’m going to serve for lunch much less dinner.
It’s easy to get discouraged.
It’s easy to let all the ways I wish I could do the day overtake my day — and then the simplicity of doing the real things gets lost.
So I do the next thing.
That’s it. When I look at the whole list I see failure and incomplete and “I’ll never make it” and too much. The list never ends. I’ll never ever finish laundry in my entire life. There will always be dinners to make and chores to do.
I don’t use the list to determine success. Instead, it’s a guide, a compass in my path of daily life.
I just do the next thing. Whether it’s wiping up the cereal from the floor or playing a game, at that moment I try to whole-heartedly do one thing. It’s a simple step. Many times when I feel overwhelmed I’ll tell myself just – do one thing, one thing, one thing – and gradually I’ll discover that many things get accomplished.
Life isn’t about finishing the list. After all if I focused on always finishing the list and lived overwhelmed I would lose. I’d lose relationships, and moments of discovery, and joy. Because that list? So often it’s about just me. And I can’t live that way allowing a list to determine my accomplishments.
I can do one thing.
And I can do it joyfully.
That’s awesome. And that’s me to a “T.” I love lists and I’m so hard on myself if I don’t accomplish them. Most days I don’t.
“Do the next thing.” What a great motto 🙂
Love it, Rachel. Reminds me of the poem “Do the Next Thing”. I am going to post that on my blog one of these days.
Such words of encouragement because I can get so wrapped up in the entire list of things to do. Just one thing…
One thing at a time…doing it joyfully… reminders I needed to hear.
I’m always a better mother when I’m lying in bed at night planning for the next day, then when I actually wake up in the morning.
This morning I was woke up by my 3yo boy (at 6-something) holding a box of Cheez-It crackers – asking me if he could eat some…. And so the day starts 🙂
Psa. 100:2 – Serve Him with gladness!!!
Life is not about its destination, but its journey..
The journey might be tough, long and winding.. but it is sure worth the walk.
This has become my motto when my days seem filled with more than I could ever possibly accomplish~I get so overwhelmed with it all some days that I miss out on the things we did do-had fun doing-and were blessed with.
I am trying to slow down a little-enjoy each moment we are given and realize that even though unfortunately some of what I really wanted to get down will still be there tomorrow (lol) I can try and get it done then.
Hope you have a happy, blessed, day filled with lots of checked off to do things! 🙂
I also have made my list shorter-hehe I get a lot more checked off that way each day.
There are MANY mornings when I feel the same way. I pop out of bed all excited to tackle my list…and then the same thing that happens to you, happens to me. I have started making a “MUST do, should do, can do” list and start with the musts and work my way down. It helps me to prioritize and all the most important things get done. 🙂 And yes. If we can do anything, we can do it joyfully!
Sounds just like my mornings. I always think the night before of all the things that I can get done the next day and then morning happens and so does life and it all goes down hill from there.
I like the idea of the list above my comment “MUST do, should do, can do”. Sounds like something I should think about trying out!
good post. REAL good.
I do not like lists, they make me cry. I take one look at them and become overwhelmed and never get a thing done. I just skip ahead to getting one thing done at a time and if it doesn’t get done I try not to worry about it.
I think laundry never gets done and there are only 4 in my family! It seems as soon as I get the laundry room clean, I turn around and it is a mess again. 🙁
Do you have a good recipe for gluten free bread? If so do you mind posting it, for I have not been successful in making it mine always turns out hard.
Continuing to pray for Samuel,
Sounds like my morning exactly. I get so discouraged and then it stifles me from accomplishing anything at all. Thank you for making me feel less crazy. : ) hugs to you.
I love the perspective of using the list as a “compass”. That is exactly what I have been needing to hear. Thank you!
Someone once told me that God doesn’t give you the grace to get through the day, he gives you the grace to get through the next minute, and the one after that, etc.
Psalms 69:13 But as for me, my prayer is unto thee, O LORD, in an acceptable time: O God, in the multitude of thy mercy hear me, in the truth of thy salvation.
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Hi Rachel, thanks for visiting my blog! I love this post, “just do one thing”. Your photography is spectacular too.