Drowning in to-do's: Help, I'd rather do anything than life admin

Photo: iStock
Photo: iStock 

The last thing I want to do after ferrying around three kids, cooking dinner, working and doing four hundred loads of washing is life admin.

You know the deal - paying bills, dealing with Centrelink, filling in school forms, booking medical appointments and doing tax returns. 

After a long day organising the lives of three other people, as well as my own, I'd rather do anything but spend my time sorting out finances and making more diary appointments. I don't need my already busy schedule to be packed full of more commitments, particularly boring ones. And I certainly don't need to be reminded that my stretched finances are to be stretched even further. 

I'd much rather sit on the couch and stare into space. Or mindlessly scroll on my phone. Or even poke needles into my eyeballs.

So, it comes as no surprise to me an online nationwide poll of 1,000 Australians, by lifestyle management company Organise. Curate. Design, found that most people would choose almost anything over doing life admin.

It discovered people would rather exercise (40 per cent), scroll through social media (39 per cent), work overtime (29.7 per cent), have dinner with their in-laws (22.8 per cent) or sit through a movie they don't like (20.2 per cent) than do life admin work. 

And although 80 per cent of respondents agreed life admin was important, or very important, to them, they'd still rather avoid it. Yet, you can't. You can't ignore life admin, because you need to keep on top of it. You haven't a choice – it's an essential job.

And I think that's the worst part of it, aside from it being very boring. It's the resentment I feel having to do more things, because I already feel like I'm doing all of the things. I have no more time for more of them. I just want some time for me. 

Which brings me to another unsurprising finding - more women (83 per cent) than men (78 per cent) hated life admin. This is simply because more women take on the majority of household life admin, not only for themselves, but also for their children. 

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Most of the time, I feel like I need a household junior just to deal with the staggering amount of school correspondence that comes from having three kids. It's never-ending. I'm drowning it.

Organise.Curate.Design founder Caroline Guillemain-Brunne said people were increasingly overwhelmed by their long to-do lists.

"Most people have a list of tasks that need completing outside of work. We call this life admin and can include things such as paying bills, banking, managing a mortgage, household chores, home repairs, booking appointments and shopping," said Ms Guillemain-Brunne. 

"On average, each person grapples with 13 outstanding jobs so it's no wonder we feel like we're constantly being bombarded with to dos. 

"It can get hard to stay on top of those tedious life admin tasks, which can often come with a sense of dread."

No wonder we hate life admin. There's just so much of it and it's constant. As soon as you tick off one task, there's another two in its place. Dread is a great way of describing it. Speaking of which, I have to go and listen to some dodgy hold music, for an eternity. It's not like I have anything better to do.