That ONE Thing: Ditch the Ever-Growing To-Do List


Task List Consuming Every Moment?

We all have a list of a hundred things to do. As a mom – I know how the lists are never-ending. If you’re anything like me – your goal each day is to cross more things off the list than you add. And, if it’s an incredibly productive day, maybe you cross more things off the list both at home and at work! Those are the days I feel like superwoman. I wish I could say I had these days more often. The truth is, if I accomplish this goal at either home or work in a single day, I feel like I’ve won one battle….but typically at the expense of the other. And that’s a hard “win” to celebrate.

I’m a full-time mom and work full-time in my businesses. I want to do both, so trust me – that’s not a complaint. I adore my kids and am more passionate about my work than I can describe. Because of this, I know that I will always find a way to be great at both. I’m on an endless quest to find better ways to accomplish more, stress less and be fully present with whomever is in front of me in each moment.

Put Yourself First, Mama

While it would be easy to allow a task list to consume every moment of every day, I guard my time carefully and preserve room for those things that are most important. Self-care is essential, and impacts the quality of wife, mom and businesswoman I am capable of being. There are a few non-negotiables on my calendar (not list) every week. Things on the task list often get moved from one day (or one week) to the next….and drag out much longer than they should. In contrast, if something makes the calendar, it gets done – we all make time for those things that are most important.

Reading, for example, is a priority for me. I make time daily. It may only be 10-15 minutes, but personal growth and my intellectual life are important enough that it gets scheduled. I might read something about parenting (lately, a lot about step-mothering as well as affirmations), relationships (making time for your spouse is important, too), and often about best business practices or something in health news or research. All of these topics impact me, but also the lives of the people who are most important.

Exercise is essential. Three hours per week are dedicated to work-outs, and I squeeze walks in with my daughter on weekends. Our older two enjoy throwing the ball outside or riding bikes – and that keeps my husband and I active enough on off-days, as well as allows us to spend quality time.

We make time for a healthy dinner around the table together as a family every night. Some nights that isn’t until 8pm when after-school sports activities keep us busy – but we always make it happen. We all sit down, tell each other the best parts of our day and what we’re grateful for, or how we made a difference in someone’s day.

I could tell you more about my schedule – but what’s important for you? What’s on your calendar? Perhaps more importantly, what isn’t on your calendar, but should be? What is consuming too much of your time that needs to be discontinued or handed off to someone else? Write down a few things that come to mind. Perhaps a “stop doing list” might be most beneficial for you. Or,  make time each day (or week, or month) to schedule those things you need to make happen.

That ONE Thing

Instead of feeling like I have an endless list that only grows, I’m focusing on shifting my mindset. I’m going to start celebrating all the things I did accomplish, instead of being stuck seeing only the path I have yet to travel. Instead of looking at my daily, weekly and monthly goals like a list to make disappear, I’m going to make all of those things (that still need to get done) take a back seat to “That ONE Thing”? Think about it. That ONE Thing. What is it for you? What ONE accomplishment could you achieve, or change could you make that would have an impact on all other aspects of your life?

We all know that the little things take care of themselves when we focus on the big things that are most important. What if we approached each day with that expectation – putting the big things first, and the task list last? That doesn’t mean you should skip feeding the kids, washing your sheets or brushing your teeth. Of course, those things will continue to get done. But what if your first thought in the morning wasn’t the task list, but the big goal? On days I do this, I absolutely feel more inspired, with my every decision more important and action impactful.

30 Minutes A Day – 30 Days

What if you focused on “That ONE Thing” each day, for 30 minutes, or for 30 days? How could that impact your life?

Before going to bed at night, write down That One Thing, that if you accomplished tomorrow, would make you feel like you’d won the day. One thing. Not a task list, but one important accomplishment that would make you feel fulfilled. For me, that would be to get everyone’s bags packed for spring break tomorrow, rather than waiting until the night before and feeling stressed rather than excited for vacation. The task list associated with this would be to get suitcases out, get laundry done, pack toiletries in smaller containers…you get the idea. Focus on That ONE Thing, and the task list will seem less daunting.

Maybe you have a bigger goal in mind. Something that requires more time and effort, like getting your daughter’s one year photo album put together (now that she’s 20 months!). If I focus 30 minutes per day for the next 30 days, I can get it done. The way I’ve been approaching it – by putting this item on the task list (for 6 months), it never seems to make its way to the top of the priority list, and I’ve gotten nowhere.

Accountability and Your Network

While my professional ventures have made business masterminds essential for constant growth, no less important are personal networks and connections. Lately, I’ve been taking many of the business principles that I’ve learned and implemented and using them for personal growth. Recently, one of the concepts that’s been top of my mind is how to feel like I’m doing less yet accomplishing more – in every aspect of life. In our professional lives, we all have expectations that we need to be held accountable for. For some, there is a supervisor that checks in on our accomplishments, and for others, we hold ourselves accountable to our own expectations. But there typically isn’t this same system of checks and balances when it comes to our personal accomplishments. For example, who wants to check in with their bestie to let them know you finished folding your laundry and got the dishwasher emptied?! There’s got to be a better way of going about this – not in a trivial way, but helping others achieve milestones and major life accomplishments.

Would a little accountability help motivate you and increase your success rate in accomplishing your mission? Share your big goal with someone who wants to see you succeed! Better yet, get with a group of people on a similar mission creating a mutually beneficial accountability network! I’ve been working to start a new group – of moms like you – who want that sense of community, accountability and inspiration. Reach out if you’d like to join me! I’d love to see you even more wildly successful as the hard-working mother you are!

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Dr. Staci Blume
Dr. Staci is a wife, mom, chiropractor, business coach and passionate entrepreneur. She moved from her home state of North Dakota to Fishers, IN in August 2016. She enjoys being an involved and awesome step-mom to two sons, and with her husband Nate, welcomed their baby girl into the world in August, 2017. She and her husband opened their third chiropractic practice, Life Refined Chiropractic, across from Hamilton Town Center in February, 2018. Additional interests include travel, fitness, nutrition, and quality connections with people who are also driven and passionate about life! She runs a local networking group for women in business, owns a health and lifestyle company, Everyday Life: Refined, and speaks to groups and organizations of all sizes on ways to live a healthier life.


  1. Staci, I too have focused much more on celebration this year and it has made a huge difference! I am working on putting myself first and making strides. When I do, that also makes a huge difference in the health of our entire family. I love the encouragements you share here!

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