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  • Writer's pictureJasmine Norwood-Dioulo

Swapped my To-Do List for a List of Promises to Myself and everything changed

What a time.

Right now, whole countries are on lock-down, travel bans are in place, families are losing loved ones, people are being laid off, airline companies are looking for bailouts, healthcare providers are risking their lives as they care for COVID-19 patients without ventilators for the sick and without protective gear for themselves, women are being forced to birth alone or chose between having their doula or their partner with them through birth, schools are closed indefinitely, people are social distancing, self-quarantining, working from home, the list goes on.

Limitations in place at our local market in Tokyo

And while the changes everyone is experiencing vary in severity, the reality is -- uncertainty, a negative 24-hour news cycle, and restrictions on our everyday lives impact us all.

All of it is an attack on our spirit.

Now more than ever, our physical, mental and spiritual health are so important.

Maybe you’re a mama, maybe you’re not. Maybe you work inside the home, or outside the home. Maybe you work for a major corporation, or maybe you’re running a small business on your own.

Any way you slice it, a working woman, is a working woman.

And right now, a lot of us are in the same boat, working from home. And while we're grateful. We've got one oar in the water, can't find the other oar, and we're paddling upstream, but we've got this -- AND we're making it look easy because, well, that's what we do!

Whether home alone or with partners and/or kids, everyone is trying to find a rhythm and adjust to a new normal as the world tries to get a handle on this pandemic.

If you're temporarily working from home or looking for a renewed energy on your continued working from home journey, this post is for you.

Here we are, women all over the world, crunching numbers, making plans, writing blogs, newscasts and articles, shooting videos, recording podcasts, video chatting with our teams and clients from the only corner of our home that doesn’t have a pile of dirty laundry in it while praying the Amazon delivery guy doesn’t forget to read the sign on the door the says “PLS DO NOT RING DOORBELL, BABY SLEEPING”. But alas, he forgets — the doorbell rings, right as we hop on that important phone call or worse — once we’ve finally gotten the baby down for a nap. And what unfolds next is pure chaos! The dog barks insistently, the baby wakes, the older kids ditch their school lessons and race to see who can get to the door first, next thing you know they’re having a yelling match about who’s faster, all as you press the unmute button to give input on your tele/video conference.

Things escalate quickly don’t they?! LOL!

I’ve been a stay at home mom; running my small business ( and chasing after our angel babe for little over a year now — and yes some moments actually do play out as described above ha! But I'm loving and thriving in these roles. I think a lot of that is because once I left my 10-year career as a TV news reporter, I did something that made a huge shift in my mentality and in my productivity -- I put myself first, or at least up near the top of the list.

I swapped my to-do list for a few daily self promises, and the rest fell into place!

One of my best girls snapped this pic while I was at her house, feeding Sav + coordinating our upcoming intn'l move.

We all have a thousand things to do, right? So much to do that most times its daunting to look at the list. But boy does it feel good when you cross things off. Hell, it feels so good to me —sometimes I write stuff on my list that I’ve already done just so I can cross it off! Hahaha

I still keep a running to-do list, but I structure my day around my LIST OF SELF-PROMISES now and that’s what I pay most attention to; It’s what’s created and maintained a momentum that’s catapulted me into a continuous sense of accomplishment and productivity.

For example, I promise myself I’m going to work out 4-5 days a week. I promise myself I’m going to wake up early and meditate every M,W,F. I promise myself I’m going to get dressed, get outside, and walk around barefoot for a few minutes every day — even if I’m up to my ears in work and/or #momlife.

The self promises sound trivial and can almost be embarrassing to write down or share (I’m going to brush my teeth, I’m going to put on make-up, the list goes on). But as silly as they may seem, keeping these tiny promises to yourself will set the tone for your day and help you feel like the be the best version of yourself. You feel better, you look better, and best of all you’ve kept a promise to yourself, so NOW YOU TRUST YOURSELF to take on more things, to ask the Universe for more because you know you can be trusted with MORE, and the Universe does too.

I first read about keeping promises to ourselves in a book called “Girl Wash Your Face” by Rachel Hollis (Hey FB Book Club girls!). In the book, Hollis talks about the fact that, as women, we keep promises to everyone else — our friends, our family, our employers, heck even strangers, and then at the end of the day if there’s time, if we feel like it, if — if—if — then, we will make good on our word to ourselves. Hollis says once she shifted that mindset, her life change.

And I’m here to tell you, it worked for me too!

If you want to give this a try, I’d recommend just starting with one or two promises, and growing from there!

Here are some ideas for your Daily Self Promises:

-Work out

-Wake up early and have quiet time (meditate, pray, stretch, make tea, whatever feels good to you’re soul)

-Brush teeth

-Brush hair (Messy Bun counts!)

-Get dressed (Yes, workout clothes, athleisure wear, and leggings all count!)

-Put on a little make-up -Take vitamins

-Spend time grounding

-Get outside

-Actually eat a full meal every day — not a shake or a bar or something your kids are picking over, actually sit down and eat a MEAL

Please let me know if you plan to give this a try and if you have any questions!

Grateful for you always and thinking of you and your families extra during this time of uncertainty and constant change.

Love Always.



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