Wednesday, December 07, 2005

A List of Lists

Countless women I know, myself included are compulsive list makers. I got to thinking about the importance of lists the other night when I was trying to enjoy the Blenders concert and not even the music could drown the sound of that little voice inside my head (you know the one) that repeats the perpetual list of things I need to get done. This time of year especially, there are post-its sticking to many of the surfaces surrounding my desk. If you ask someone why they make lists, they will most likely tell you so they don't forget to do something. That is true for me also, but my reasons for writing them go beyond that. That little voice in my head that repeats itself over and over is quieted when I write down what it is saying. All of these things I need to remember that are floating around in my memory are much more tangible when I can see them written. Plus, I love the part where I get to cross an item off my list. I have been known to write down a task I have already completed just so I can cross it off. Do Dishes...Check! How's that for needing extrinsic reinforcement? I find that I am much more likely to complete a dreaded task if I can cross it off a list.I don't think men can quite comprehend what it is like for us women to be burdened with these constant mental to do lists clogging our brains. Not to sound sterotypical, but I think most men focus on the task at hand, and when they are finished they may or may not look for another task to complete. I am so addictied to making lists that I actually have categories and subcategories of lists. There are the running lists of items need from the grocery store and Target, lists of schedules, lists of due dates for bills, lists of passwords for online accounts, and even lists of movies I want to see. There are also the endless TO DO lists broken down into categories, such as "Today" : do art project, order computer ink, finish folding laundry, attend daycare training, think of something interesting to blog about; "This Week" : fill out daycare relicensing paperwork, get laminating done, clean bathrooms, rotate toys, call for furnace inspection; "Before Christmas" : all the usual things just like your list; and my favorite list "When I Have Some Extra Time" : clean out closets and mudroom and organize rummage sale items, finish coverting home VHS movies into DVD's, update kid's scrapbooks, finish 2005 scrapbook, make kitchen curtains. If I get to cross an item off of THIS list, the satisfaction is great! I have also been interested in putting together an "In My Lifetime" list. This would include the big picture things I want to accomplish such as take a trip to Hawaii, go on a mission trip to an orphanage in Africa, attend the Oprah show etc. Do you have a lifetime list? Have you been able to cross anything off of it lately? If you have, let me know; I'd be interested in hearing about it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yes dear, I do have something I can actually cross off my "Lifetime List" . . . and that was to finally attend the Hollidazzle Parade downtown Mpls. right in front of the old Daytons store where I got my first retail job fresh out of college. Thanks for bringing the girls and going with me....and enabling me to cross one thing off my very own lifetime list... and attending the Oprah Show is another one I have on my list to do as well... this time though, let's leave Kate and Kennedy at home OK ? ? smile...Momsie