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Craft Your Not-To-Do List Before Christmas to Nail Your Priorities

Crafting a ‘Not-To-Do List’ can be your secret weapon for maintaining balance, reducing stress, and focusing on what truly matters during Christmas. As the festive season approaches, the pressure of juggling numerous tasks, events, and obligations can quickly overwhelm us.

Amidst the holiday hustle and bustle, discover now how a Not-To-Do List can revolutionize your productivity, enhance your well-being, and allow you to savor the joy of the season.

1. Understanding the Power of a Not-To-Do List

The ‘Not-To-Do List’ stands shoulder to shoulder with its counterpart, the to-do list. However, this more unconventional yet powerful concept involves identifying and eliminating non-essential tasks, distractions, and commitments that drain your time and energy, hinder your progress, or distract you from your core objectives.

It’s about setting boundaries and consciously choosing what not to engage in, enabling you to focus on the meaningful activities that align with your priorities and values. A ‘Not-To-Do List’ is all about reclaiming control and channeling your focus toward activities that align with your values and aspirations.

Key takeaways:

  • A ‘Not-To-Do List’ complements your to-do list, enhancing productivity.
  • It aids in filtering out tasks that hinder progress or don’t align with goals.
  • By eliminating non-essentials, focus amplifies value-aligned activities.
  • Helps in focusing on activities aligned with personal values.

Call to action: Sit down and take 5 minutes to write down what is really important for you at the moment and this holiday season, so you have a clear vision of your values and desires for the season.

2. Identifying Your Not-To-Do List Items

Now, begin by reflecting on the past years and stressful situations. Which activities and/or commitments consistently derail your focus or contribute to holiday stress?

These could be engagements that don’t resonate with your goals, tasks consuming unnecessary time, or social obligations that induce anxiety. For instance, attending every holiday party or taking on additional work projects might be draining and lead to burnout.

Key takeaways:

  • Identify activities that don’t align with your goals or values.
  • Recognize tasks that cause stress or drain energy.
  • Example: Say ‘no’ to extra work projects during the holiday season to avoid burnout.

Call to action: Take a moment and reflect on past year’s experiences. Try to identify at least three items to add to your ‘Not-To-Do List’ for the holiday season, and stick to denying things like that this year if they don’t fit your values and goals.

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3. Prioritizing Self-Care and Boundaries

In the hustle of the holiday season, self-care often takes a back seat. Incorporating self-care practices into your ‘Not-To-Do List’ is essential. Establish boundaries by respectfully declining commitments that encroach on your mental or physical well-being. Saying ‘no’ to excessive social engagements or setting limits on digital consumption significantly contributes to maintaining balance.

Key takeaways:

  • Prioritize self-care on your ‘Not-To-Do List’ to safeguard well-being.
  • Set boundaries by declining commitments impacting mental or physical health.
  • Example: Limit screen time to prioritize mental health and family time.

Call to action: Commit to prioritizing self-care by setting clear boundaries in alignment with your ‘Not-To-Do List’. Take a look at time- and energy-wasting habits and limit them if possible. Try going outside instead, or do something to move your body.

4. Streamlining and Simplifying Your Schedule

Streamlining your schedule involves the strategic elimination of tasks that don’t align with your priorities. Delegate or postpone non-urgent tasks and focus on what truly matters. Simplifying your schedule and commitments creates a breathing space and allows you to enjoy a more relaxed holiday experience.

Key takeaways:

  • Eliminate non-essential tasks from your schedule.
  • Delegate, declutter, or postpone tasks that aren’t urgent and impactful.
  • Example: Delegate meal preparation tasks to family members to reduce stress.

Call to action: Audit your schedule and identify tasks that can be delegated, decluttered, or postponed from your schedule. Try to stretch tasks to eventually create space to breathe and relax.

5. Embracing the Joy of Missing Out (JOMO)

The ‘Joy of Missing Out’ (JOMO) flips the concept of FOMO (fear of missing out) inside out and embraces the feeling of finding contentment in consciously skipping non-essential activities. It’s about recognizing that by declining certain engagements, you create room for more enriching experiences or just to relax in stressful times. 

Embrace the freedom and tranquility that comes with prioritizing your time and energy.

Key takeaways:

  • Find contentment in missing out on non-essential activities.
  • Prioritize meaningful experiences over a packed schedule.
  • Example: Enjoy a quiet evening at home with loved ones instead of attending every event.

Call to action: Embrace the ‘Joy of Missing Out’ (JOMO) by consciously choosing quality over quantity in your holiday engagements and don’t fear missing out by staying home. Instead enjoy the time and tranquility gained.


Crafting a ‘Not-To-Do List’ before the holiday season can revolutionize how you navigate through the festivities. By consciously choosing what to eliminate, you pave the way for a more joyful, intentional, and stress-free Christmas.

Remember, it’s not about restricting yourself but rather freeing up space for what truly matters. Embrace this innovative approach and reclaim the joy of the season by prioritizing what aligns with your values and brings genuine happiness.

Utilize the power of your ‘Not-To-Do List’ and savor the magic of Christmas without the overwhelming stress. Start prioritizing today and gift yourself the joy of a well-balanced and fulfilling holiday season!

Need some additional stress relief? Then read about 5 quick stress busters for busy people. Or read about how to set priorities and simplify your routine.

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