How To Get Rid of the Honey-Do List and Keep It Gone

BY: - 12 Nov '12 | Home

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Someone I know, a man, recently told me me he believes something in women’s DNA requires them to always have a man tasked. He went on to say if we aren’t doing anything then either something is wrong or we must have forgotten to do something we were told to do. I should point out this man is divorced, but plenty of married men feel the same way. In spite of this, I accidentally discovered how to not only to do away with the Honey-Do list, but also how to keep it from coming back.

I got organized and I started thinking like my wife.

Think about it. With work and groceries and kids and church and dreams and marriage aren’t we all perpetually tasked. The married parent’s to-do list is never ending. There just aren’t enough hours of the day and there is always more that could and should be done.

About two weeks ago I finished a project I was working on and then I cleaned my desk. Shredded papers, cleaned out drawers, the works. This weird calm came over me once I shredded the last non-essential document and emptied the trash can that sits by my feet. It was the feeling of completion, something I’m not sure I’ve felt in years. I took a deep breath and took a few minutes to bask in actually being done with something and when suddenly I did something completely out of character: I began to think like my wife.

Don’t Wait, Get Proactive
In my current occupation I have the blessing and curse of being able to work from home. This comes with the unspoken burdenhonorable obligation to manage the household affairs while everyone is gone for the day. I began scanning my surroundings for anything and everything that could or should be done. Even the stuff that someone else had already promised to do. Laundry, yard work, kitchen duties and household paperwork and bills. On this day, I didn’t wait to be asked I just started doing what needed to be done. I didn’t think to myself it will get done eventually, or it will be fine. If I saw it I did it.

From there I began waking up earlier in the morning to afford myself more time to tend to do the things I need to do for myself as well as what I have to do for my family. Now the dog is walked long before the question is asked. The lunches are made, the trash is taken out — less and less is slipping through the cracks. I’m at peace, and what’s more, so is my wife.

Now for the men reading this you might be thinking, “How is this getting rid of the Honey-Do list?” The reality is that the list will always be there as long as you are living and especially if you are living with someone else, but now it’s no longer your wife’s. Of course, she may add a few things here and there. Such is life. But she will begin to rest in the comfort of knowing that you’ve got it covered. This isn’t going to happen overnight. Her first reaction might be suspicion. Try your best not to get offended. If she says thank you, casually say, “For what?” and under no circumstances should you point out all that you do demanding a reward in return if you expect to get a reward. You are simply doing what you are supposed to be doing, being the man of the house and the man around the house. Hopefully this will happen sooner, rather than later. This doesn’t mean do everything, but I am simply advising you to do your part. Ultimately, the two of you are there to support and care for one another. Wouldn’t it be nice to know your woman knows she’s taken care of and made happy by you? That is reward enough by itself.

Resolve today to get that last Honey-Do list done and commit to owning it. Then sit back and discover how much easier and happier life becomes around the house.

BMWK – please share with how you have gotten “rid of the the honey-do” list?   Sharing the household responsibilities is definitely an area of concern for many couples.   Please let us know how you and your spouse have come to a working a agreement in this are.

About the author

Eric Payne wrote 83 articles on this blog.

Named a Top 50 Dad Blogger in 2011 by Cision Media & awarded Top 50 Dad Blog in 2011 and 2012 by, Eric writes about fatherhood, marriage and everything in between on his blog He speaks around the country about social media and blogging. He is the author of "DAD: As Easy As A, B, C!" and is a regular on CNN's Headline News station and the Jennifer Keitt show on KISS 104.1 FM Atlanta.


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5 WordPress comments on “How To Get Rid of the Honey-Do List and Keep It Gone

  1. Jos

    I think husbands should make an effort to do things around the house and not wait for their wife to tell them to do so. It’s really frustrating to hear “You didn’t tell me you wanted me to do this or that” when you live there as well and you should just want to do things to keep the house maintained. It keeps argument to the minimal and gives the couple more time for each other instead of worrying when someone is going to do something to help. It also makes wife feel appreciated for the husbands to put themselves in their wives’ shoes and just help out without asking for it.

  2. Motivator

    I must admit and get str8 to the point, when I consistently (that’s the key) started to take care of the “Honey-Do” list before I was asked to, she pleased me more often sexually. Some might call it a reward but note the word “consistent.” If I’m continuously “rewarded” for taking care of the house consistently, I guess it’ll just be a reward then to those that believe that. But I see it as a win-win situation or a gift that keeps on giving. Somebody has to start “the cycle.” For example: household chores (from me) = sexual pleasures (from her) = general conversation/communication (from me) = “me” time to myself for something like watching the game. The downside to that cycle is: asked to do things (by her), never get done (by me), she engages in sex when she wants to (by her), I don’t like the “every-now-and-again” so no communication (by me), constant nagging (by her, in my eyes)…You get my drift.

    I’ve learned that early on in my marriage that we must create WIN-WIN situations in order to stay perpetually happy. In closing, WE BOTH LOSE when we take the eyes off of each other and completely focus on ourselves.

  3. Sherry Stevens

    I am married for just over a month and after reading your article, you have just reconfirmed what I knew all along. I married the right man. Thank you for that. Please continue to share. God bless.


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