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Set Future You up for Sanity

focus less stress motivation productivity May 09, 2021

Have you ever had a week go so far sideways, you can’t even remember where you started? When I sat down and looked at the plan I’d made last Sunday, I thought, “who wrote this?”

I like to do my planning on Sundays. I make my list of what needs to happen and then I make sure each one of those things has a block in my calendar. It’s called block scheduling and it’s been working well for me, in general. I used to just make the to-do list, but I was often unrealistic about how much I could get done. Now that that I also give everything a spot on my calendar, as well as some buffer time, I’m generally much better about estimating and executing.

But this week, the whole plan exploded like a grenade.

I initially started this newsletter 6 years ago with a promise to help you stay sane and out of the loony bin.

So this past week, one of the things that helped me hold onto my sanity was writing.

Keeping a running list of everything I needed to do.

Writing and journaling about what was happening and how I felt about it.

Carrying a notebook with me and writing down even simple things like, “make grocery list” because I knew my brain wasn’t in a place to remember that for more than 5 seconds.

Doing a brain dump from time to time. (That’s when you just word vomit everything you’re thinking onto a piece of paper and try then try to sort through it. It’s very helpful when you’re overwhelmed.)

Writing, writing, writing.

Writing helps us process our feelings.

Writing helps us discern our priorities.

Writing helps us keep up with what we’re supposed to do because even in the midst of chaos, there’s still a to do list that you didn’t see coming.


Do some personal writing this week. Whether it’s journaling or listing or brain dumping, make a commitment to do MORE writing. If I hadn’t had my writing habits in place before the chaos started, I wouldn’t have been able to lean on them during a time of stress.

Establish good habits while things are okay, and they’ll be there for you when Future You needs them.



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