Celebrated images of strength and hotness, Wonder Woman and Superwoman, both products of DC Comics, are boot clad, cape waving testaments to woman power.
From their perfectly-proportioned physique to their super hero prowess, Wonder Woman and Superwoman influence the female race, generation after generation. As does the notion that we can do everything and anything with aplomb and precision. Women of all ages—women like me—attempt to fill the boots of the imaginary Everything Woman, our cape looking more like a tunic.
Depending upon the generation or era, Everything Woman may wear a braid, a bob, or a pixie cut, but the aim is the same: Be everything to everyone.FYI, Everything Woman most likely wears a tunic in place of a cape, and possibly a braid, a bob, or a pixie cut. Click To Tweet
My short hair doesn’t flow or flip. I don’t have an Amazon-warrior-woman bone in my body. Still, I sank my feet into the boots and donned my makeshift cape to conquer an ever-growing, out of control to-do list.
Off I went to be everything to everyone.
Not only did I scribble a long list of unrealistic expectations, but I invited everyone in my world to add to it.
To infinity. And beyond.
Are you tracking with me?
Fraught with finger-pointing expectations, the see-if-you-can-do-all-this list propelled the wanna-be superhero from the board room to the baby crib, the PTA meeting to Pinterest to acquire and create the perfect centerpiece for the super-sized family holiday celebration she’s hosting. The endless to-do’s pushed her to sprint from mowing the lawn to volunteering at the food bank. Oh, and don’t forget to pick up a carton of almond milk on your way home from choir practice.
Newsflash: Everything Woman perished. Strangled by a killer to-do list.
An unrealistic, unrelenting, never ending to-do list is a killer list. A killer to-do list saps you of your strength. You forget to breathe.A killer to-do list saps you of your strength. You forget to breathe. Click To Tweet
We weren’t designed to carry the weight of the world between the lines on a list.
A reasonable list may be your friend, for memory’s sake. But when productivity is interpreted as power and promoted as the Holy Grail, viewing check marks as the measure of our worth becomes the standard.
What if pursuing a measurable yield isn’t the best path to nurturing an effectual life?
Let’s lose the big E for Everything, and take swift steps away from any and every unreasonable list of to-do’s.
Here are seven truths to help us do just that:
- Grace is yours to claim. Breathe out the feelings of inadequacy. Breathe in the assurance that God is all sufficient. (2 Corinthians 12:9)
2. Rest restores. Psalm 46:10 tells us how to rest. “Be still, and know that I am God.”
3. Your value isn’t measured by the number of tasks you attempt or the checkmarks you accumulate. God made you fearfully and wonderfully. His thoughts toward you are precious (Psalm 139:14, 17).
4. You can give precedence to your priorities, according to God’s call on your life.
5. You are only one person. Anchor your expectations and those of others in that reality.
6. Saying “yes” to one request or opportunity usually necessitates saying “no” to another. Addition and subtraction are kin.Saying “yes” to one request usually necessitates saying “no” to another. Click To Tweet
7. Fulfillment follows purposeful productivity. Be intentional. Use your hand-picked priorities to choose what goes on your list. (And what comes off.)
Reaching our potential, stepping into God’s purpose for us, isn’t about going-through-the motions-productivity, but about being present and purposeful.
I’d love to hear from you. What is your to-do list story? How do you manage your list, or does it manage you?
If you liked this post, you might also enjoy one of the three downloads available on my home page: 9 Secrets to Help You Crush Stress.