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Ditch the To-Do for a Ta-Da List to get stuff done

Ever stared at a mile-long to-do list at the end of the day, feeling like you accomplished nothing? We’ve all been there, mama. The pressure to check things off that endless list can be soul-crushing, especially for those of us with ADHD. But what if there was a better way?

Enter the ta-da list, a game-changer for productivity and a powerful tool to combat the negativity bias that often comes with ADHD. Intrigued? Here’s how a ta-da list can transform your day-to-day:

Shifting Focus: From Burden to Celebration

A traditional to-do list focuses on what you haven’t done yet. It can feel overwhelming and demotivating. I used to write a list of things I need to do within the week, then break it down to the days of week. Whenever I looked at yesterday’s work load which I hadn’t completed, I feel so demotivated. I work on them and then work load keeps getting procrastinated. This is why task prioritisation is important. But don’t use your weekly task list as the visual cue. Instead the Ta-Da list is what needs to be seen always.

A ta-da list, is all about celebrating your wins, big or small. Did you finally conquer that overflowing laundry basket? Ta-da! Managed to squeeze in a quick phone call with a friend? Ta-da! Every completed task, every hurdle jumped, gets a spot on your ta-da list.

The Power of Positive Reinforcement

We all thrive on a little recognition, and a ta-da list is your personal cheerleader. Seeing that list grow throughout the day is a powerful motivator. It’s a tangible reminder of your accomplishments, a visual representation of your awesomeness. This positive reinforcement loop keeps you energized and focused, making you want to tackle even more tasks.

From Feeling Overwhelmed to Feeling Empowered

To-do lists can be rigid and unforgiving. Didn’t get to that dentist appointment you scheduled? It goes on the list, looming over you with guilt. A ta-da list is more flexible. Life throws curveballs, and that’s okay! If something doesn’t get done today, it simply doesn’t make the ta-da list. No guilt, no shame, just move it to tomorrow and focus on what you did achieve.

To-Do List Vs. Ta-Da List comparison table

Here’s a quick breakdown of the key differences:

  • Focus: A to-do list highlights what you haven’t accomplished yet, which can feel overwhelming and lead to guilt. A ta-da list, on the other hand, focuses on your wins, no matter how small, fostering a positive and motivated mindset.
  • Motivation: Staring at a long to-do list can be demotivating. The ta-da list, however, acts like a personal cheerleader, keeping you energized and wanting to tackle more tasks.
  • Flexibility: To-do lists are unforgiving – if something doesn’t get done, it stays on the list, adding to the pressure. The ta-da list is more flexible. Didn’t get to that dentist appointment? No worries, just move on and focus on what you did achie

Getting Started with Your Ta-Da List

Ready to ditch the negativity and embrace your accomplishments? Here’s how to create your own ta-da list:

  • Grab a notebook or use a digital note-taking app. Whichever works best for you!
  • Throughout the day, jot down every completed task, no matter how small. Folded laundry? Paid a bill? Those all deserve a spot on your ta-da list!
  • Get creative! Decorate your list, add stickers, or use colorful pens. Make it visually appealing and something you enjoy looking at.
  • Stay Consistent!– Like any new habit, the Ta-da List works best when you stick with it. Make it a part of your daily routine, and watch the magic happen.

I have outline a to-do list vs a ta-da list below so that you will get an idea on how to turn your to-do list to a Ta-Da list

TimeTo-Do ListTa-Da List
8:00 AMMake breakfast and pack lunchesMade yummy breakfast! Packed lunches
9:00 AMHelp kids with homeworkAced those fractions! High five from the little one!
10:00 AMTake the dog for a walkWalked the pup & enjoyed fresh air
11:00 AMTackle the overflowing inboxConquered email! Inbox zero!
12:00 PMQuick workoutFit in a sweat session! Feeling energized!
1:00 PMGrocery shoppingGrocery store champ! Got dinner ingredients!
2:00 PMPay billsPaid the bills! One less worry
3:00 PMPlaydate for the kidsFun playdate! Kids happy (and me too!)
4:00 PMStart prepping dinnerChopped veggies like a boss! Dinner prep started!
5:00 PMRelax and unwindGot some “me time” before the craziness!
Sample Ta-Da List

Why the Ta-da List Works for ADHD Moms

Now, you might be thinking, “But won’t I forget what I need to do if I don’t write it down right away?” Trust me, I had the same concern. You can use a brain dump for all those ideas and tasks which needs to be done. But here’s the beauty of the Ta-da List: it’s flexible. If you do happen to forget something, no biggie! Just add it to your list after you’ve done it. It’s all about shifting your mindset from “I have to do this” to “Look what I’ve accomplished!”

Plus, the Ta-da List helps combat that overwhelming feeling that often comes with traditional to-do lists. Instead of fixating on everything you haven’t done, you get to bask in the satisfaction of seeing all the things you have done. And let me tell you, there’s nothing quite as motivating as that feeling of accomplishment.

The Ta-Da List: A Simple Shift with Big Results

Key Takeaways:

  • Focus on the Small Wins: Don’t just celebrate big accomplishments – even small tasks like making breakfast deserve a spot on your ta-da list.
  • Make it Fun: Use descriptive and fun language to make completing tasks feel more rewarding.
  • Celebrate Every Step: Acknowledge your progress throughout the day, keeping yourself motivated and positive.
  • Don’t Forget Self-Care: Even taking a few minutes for yourself is a win worth celebrating!

A ta-da list might seem like a small change, but the impact it can have on your mindset and productivity is incredible. Stop focusing on what you haven’t done and start celebrating what you have. You’ll be surprised at how much more you can accomplish when you embrace the power of the ta-da list, mama! So, grab a pen, unleash your inner champion, and get ready to make that ta-da list sing! Also don’t forget to check out my other productivity tips to crush your tasks and goals!!

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