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To do or NOT to do….

Most of our lives are spent getting stressed and run down by the amount of stuff there is to do all the time, without necessarily taking time to think whether we should be doing it all at all.

TO DO or NOT TO Do – that is the question….!

TO DO or NOT TO DO - that really is the question that is answered in this article!


So far in this blog I have talked a lot about TO DO lists, MASTER TO DO lists, and NICE TO DO lists, all things that focus on what we should be spending our time and energy on.

The flip side of these lists of course is a NOT TO DO list – much less talked about, but just as important a tool for productivity and living the life you want to live.

Its basically a way to focus on what you don’t want, in order to get what you do want.

What you choose not to spend time on has a direct affect on what you DO spend your time doing – it’s all about being proactive with your life

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Work out what’s important to you, and what isn’t…

One of the best pieces of advice I have been given has been to work out what is “to do or not to do” in life, and act accordingly.

By this I mean that, just as a plain old TO DO list can be so much use to you, so too can a NOT TO DO list.

It can help you identify your priorities, and what you really should be saying no to a little more.

Here are loads of examples for inspiration – take a look and see what you think:-

  • NOT TO DO – Spend money you haven’t got
  • NOT TO DO – Spend time and energy on people or things which make you feel negative
  • NOT TO DO – Say yes to things you don’t want to do or have no time to commit to
  • NOT TO DO – Forget about giving yourself a break
  • NOT TO DO – Eat food that makes you feel bad
  • NOT TO DO – Stress about things you can’t change
  • NOT TO DO – Try and keep your home immaculate at all times
  • NOT TO DO – Try to please everyone
  • NOT TO DO – Try to do everything
  • NOT TO DO – Answer the phone if you are in the middle of something important
  • NOT TO DO – Agree to something there and then (give yourself time to think whether you can fit it into your schedule)
  • NOT TO DO – Spend too long on Facebook/Pinterest/twitter (insert any time waster you may have here)
  • NOT TO DO – Prioritise work over family
  • NOT TO DO – Procrastinate
  • NOT TO DO – Watch bad TV or repeats just for the sake of it
  • NOT TO DO – Get stuck in a rut
  • NOT TO DO – Stay in a job you hate
  • NOT TO DO – Overfill the weekends with social stuff
  • NOT TO DO – Overfill after school with activities
  • NOT TO DO – Schedule meetings and appointments so they take up the entire day
  • NOT TO DO – Leave things until the last minute
  • NOT TO DO – Feel guilty about not cooking from scratch every night
  • NOT TO DO – Set unrealistic targets for myself and others
  • NOT TO DO – Moan about things that you can change

Do any of these catch your attention?

A little task for today is to sit down with a blank piece of paper and think of all the things that you really don’t want to do anymore, whether they be time wasters, ways of thinking, causes of stress, etc… just brainstorm all the things that you can think of.

Once you have your list, a great idea is to stick it somewhere close to your TO DO list. That way you can make sure that your TO DO list doesn’t have anything on it that contradicts the NOT TO DO list.

It may just help you stay a little more focused and become a little more productive going forward, and that just makes sense!

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A great list of NOT TO DO's - which are just as, if not more, important than your TO DOs - which are you guilty of?


So – ask yourself “TO DO or NOT TO DO” a little more, and see what you can achieve and how much better you can feel.

I’d love to know what’s on your NOT TO DO list – let me know in the comments below…

** This post may contain affiliate links - to find out more please see my disclosure policy



3 Responses to To do or NOT to do….

  1. Jo @ Let's Face the Music Dec 27, 2014 at 12:41 pm #

    Great list. I just told my husband yesterday that I’m not sending people home from our New Year’s Eve party with gifts or food; if they come and eat and socialize that’s enough. Thanks for reminding us we don’t have to . . . Jo @ Let’s Face the Music

  2. Karen Jun 11, 2014 at 8:25 am #

    I love this blog post it’s very thought provoking, I shall be sitting down with my piece of paper this afternoon.

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