I am a list-maker. It is genetic. Got it from my mom. She used to present each family member with a to-do list on a Saturday morning, when all I really wanted to do was watch cartoons. I think we had three television stations that we could receive, and those Saturday morning cartoons were what we lived for. I still like me a good cartoon. But now I make my own to-do lists. I like to put them on sticky notes on my computer desktop. Virtual sticky notes, not real ones. Then I delete the items as I complete them. I have to admit that those lists actually helped me when I was a kid. I work better when I have a clear idea of what has to be done, and some way of marking progress.
But I have found as an adult, that anything I have to write on a sticky note is probably something that I really don’t want to do. Otherwise I would have just done it, rather than sitting down at the computer to compose a sticky note. For example, in the amount of time it took to sit down and type up a sticky note that says to call the insurance agent back, I could actually have called the insurance agent back. But that would require me doing the thing I don’t want to do. Creating a sticky note is a much more pleasant alternative. But I will admit, I weary of moving Monday’s jobs to Tuesday, and Tuesday’s list to Wednesday, as I have quite a collection of chores that I am studiously avoiding.
But this morning was different. It is not noon yet, and I have checked everything off my notes, and actually closed them... No sticky notes on the desktop! It makes me feel very accomplished. I must have been crazy busy, you are thinking. But no. My strategy involved something I will call simplification. I didn’t work harder; I just lowered my standards. Yes, I still have breakfast dishes in the sink. Bed made? No. But they weren’t on the list. Do you see where I’m going with this? Genius! My list consisted of, Get up. Get Skippy off to his first day of First Grade. Go for bagels with Kathie. Check my e-mails. Find a good book to read. Write a new blog post. Check.
And look at me… not even noon, and my whole To-Do List… wiped out and put away. Just wanted you to know I’m on a roll, over here… and I am just tingling with anticipation to see what is on the list for tomorrow. Maybe I will watch cartoons.