Making a List

I woke up this morning with a nasty headache. That used to happen a lot more often than it does now, for whatever reason. I’m thankful for that. But it’s still awful when it does happen. My stomach also feels really bloated and unpleasant. I’m not sure if these two things are related, or merely coincidental. Either way, I have been in bed most of the day, and the result of that is more bad feelings piled on top of my physical pains, because I have been unable to cross anything off my weekend “to do” list. I have to have the list or I won’t do any of it. If I don’t write it down it’s like it doesn’t exist. Even something as basic and unavoidable as “wash the dishes” needs to be on the list. It’s so perplexing to me, how much more I get done if I just write it down first. Why is my brain so easily tricked into accomplishment? Having the list in my head is not enough. It has to exist on a piece of paper or in a text file on my computer, so I can see it with my actual eyes and not just my mind’s eye.

Which then gets me to thinking: If I make a list for all my small household chores, and it works, can I make a list of the BIG STUFF I need to do? Would that work? Would I actually get something done?

A list that would look something like this:

pay off credit cards
write a novel
learn to speak Spanish
get back into an exercise routine
put more money in my IRA
Ad infinitum. . .

I don’t know. At this time of year that sounds awfully “New Year’s Resolution”-y, and I don’t do resolutions because I don’t dig setting myself up for the inevitable failure.

HOWEVER. They are all things that need to be done (paying off bills), or it would be really nice to have done (speaking Spanish). There are lots of other things on that BIG STUFF list that currently only exists in my mind’s eye. I really don’t want to write it all down because each thing needs to then be broken down into multiple sub-lists of tasks and I’m afraid I’ll panic and go back to bed when I look at the magnitude of it all. The clock is ticking. But of course, the longer I wait to write it down the less time I have left to get any of it done. I would rather distract myself to death with organizing my library of Duran Duran photos or playing Candy Crush than do something that might have an actual positive affect on my life.

And the next thing I know it will be ten years later and I’ll still have the same list in my head, with nothing crossed off.

So I guess I will make a BIG STUFF list and see what happens. I am making no promises, no requirements, no goals other having the list written down. Then we’ll see what happens I guess.

(One sort-of-kind-of resolution I AM making for the coming year is to post something here at least 3 times a week, despite all that inevitable failure talk above. I am glorious in my human contradictions.)

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Making a List