TO DO Lists help us to remember important tasks that need to be done. List making is a great tool for focus and efficiency that I recommend as a personal life coach. And I acknowledge the list makers of the world, like myself. Lists really do help with productivity! But have you noticed that these To Do Lists can become ever present in our minds and thoughts? Often wondering what we’ve forgotten TO DO, what we need TO DO next, and what tasks need to be added to the list? It becomes important to not let our To Do Lists take over our state of being!

What would it be like if we were to create, and be vigilant about, a TO BE List, a mindful living list? Such a list might include these: Be Present; Be Compassionate; Be Peaceful; Be Joyful; Be Alert; Be Grateful; Be Accepting; Be Playful; Be Curious; Be Patient

A TO BE List is not a list to check items off, the way we mark things off as DONE on a TO DO List, because BEING is never “done”. In fact, you could use the same TO BE List every day, and it would never be outlived. Its purpose is to clarify our intentions for HOW and NOW, rather than to evaluate past performances. Our TO BE List reminds us of the choices we have every moment and inspire us to always be our best selves. In the words of the late Coach John Wooden, “It isn't what you do, but how you do it.”

Choosing How to BE is perhaps more subjective than choosing What to DO. And, it’s more powerful in terms of quality of life. For example, charging ahead on a TO DO List frequently results in feeling rushed and overwhelmed, not enjoying the actual doing. In my work as a Spiritual Life Coach, my clients find that being mindful is the key to enjoyment. (And being mindful is also a key to greater productivity, but that’s a different topic I will write about later!)

In consciously choosing a state of Being like BE Alert, you are more likely be surprised and enriched as you notice things unnoticed before. Choosing to BE Compassionate, many ordinary conversations become rich and meaningful.

Are you ready to really ENJOY Getting Things Done? After all, you’ll be doing things on your To Do List anyway, right? I suggest that you put your TO BE List right next to your TO DO List, where you can see both, or even have them on the same page. Then, whenever you decide on the next thing to do, ask yourself “How will I BE as I DO this?” as you select from the TO BE List.

For example, if you need to contact a company about an error in your order, how do you want to be as you do it? Open? Relaxed? Understanding? Clear? Patient? If laundry is next, how do you want to BE as you do the laundry? Calm? Mindful? Playful? Curious?

I hope you have fun with this TO BE List mindfulness practice. It’s easy to remember. Just sing, “Do Be Do Be Do…”

And one more important personal life coach tip: Things like “BE productive” or “BE perfect” violate the spirit of the TO BE list. BE careful how you choose to BE!

Author's Bio: 

Brook Montagna, Life Coach, specializes in coaching individuals and groups to deepen their experience in life, to live boldly, and to manifest personal and professional success. Brook's coaching is grounded in mindfulness and helps clients develop focus, awareness, acceptance, peace and joy. If you are interested in working with Brook, schedule your free initial consultation at Learn Mindfulness Practice and Tips at Mindful Way of Life.