Taking Life In Stride

toddler breakfast

It’s Labor Day. Traditionally, this is the end of the summer here in Minnesota. And as I find myself looking forward to warm sweaters and boots, Pumpkin everything, and chillier weather, I can’t help but wonder: where did the summer go?

I spent this weekend trying to check a few things off of my summer list, which I didn’t really accomplish much of throughout the rest of the summer months. We went to the zoo on Friday, wrapped up some little house projects yesterday, and got all of our fall flowers planted today.

Yet, there are still so many things that I wanted to get done over the course of the summer. As is my nature, I started to put some pressure on myself to get more done. Be more productive. Operate more efficiently.

And then, it was like the brakes sounded, and I realized just how much I actually did accomplish this summer. I had an infant. I checked some gardening projects off my list. I grew my business. I discovered new opportunities. I started getting back in shape. I spent lots and lots of time with my kiddos. All in all, I have to commend myself – because that’s a pretty darn successful summer!

Sometimes, I find myself getting way too wrapped up in my checklists, and what I’m trying to accomplish in the moment, instead of also giving myself credit for what I’ve done in the past, or what I’m doing that doesn’t appear on that list. I think that’s really common for working moms – to get really focused on the end goal, instead of taking in everything around us, and giving ourselves credit for everything that’s on our plate.

Beyond that, those checklists can be never ending! I don’t know about you, but I often find myself adding things onto my “to-do” list just as quickly as I check them off. It’s like laundry – as soon as you think you’ve accomplished a houseful, you find five more loads to do. It’s a constant cycle!

This weekend, I wrapped up a little prepping for baby checklist that I wrote last JANUARY. That’s right: I finally finished tackling all of those “preparatory” things I wanted to get done before Christopher was born. In April. Basically, his room is now completely pulled together, just in time for him to be moved into it.

Trust me. I realize how crazy I sound.

While my checklists are important, they’re not the end all to success in life. Not everything that we do gets written on a paper list. So the next time you find yourself falling to that moment of panic, where you realize you just haven’t checked off as many to-do’s as you think you should have, take a step back. Look at the big picture. I think you’ll be surprised by how much you’ve actually done.

And if that doesn’t make you feel better, remember: so many mamas are in the same boat. And anything that you don’t get done today? Well, it will have just as much importance on tomorrow’s to-do list. That I can guarantee!

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