For a lot of reasons, I stopped making lists when I moved overseas. I had been an obsessive compulsive list maker. I’d add things to the list after I’d done them so that I could have the gratification of crossing them off and feeling like I had, in fact, accomplished something.
But suddenly, making lists became stressful for me. I probably became a little more disorganized in the process. But it felt freeing.
Perhaps it’s because, as a parent, I know that list-making is futile. If I add “wash dishes” to a list, it’s a waste. There will be more dirty dishes in the sink as soon as I get the satisfaction of crossing it off. I might add “buy stamps at the post office” and won’t have to put that back on. But it will quickly become replaced by another activity that is of equal importance. Do I make a list of activities? Chores? Things I need or can’t forget? Maybe I need separate lists for each. And then I need some sort of a list organization system so that I can keep them all straight.
I know. It sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it?
But when I was depressed, this was how I viewed the world.
Healthy, happy Kelly doesn’t make lists. I can’t. I don’t spend as much time thinking about the things I need to do, and when I do, I recognize that it stresses me out, makes me upset, and actually causes me to accomplish substantially less than I would if I just got on with it.
So my list-making has gone by the wayside. Maybe I’m not as organized because of it. But maybe, just maybe, I’m better for it.