Friday, March 16, 2012

The ToDo List

We have a problem with ToDo lists in our household. They're never-ending.

We're incapable of looking at a list and saying, "Well, I've done everything on the list." There's always something else we can add.

Typically, that list resides in my head as I'm overwhelmed by actually writing down everything that I need and want to do. It looks scarier in print, and my life is typically simple enough that I don't need a master list. But right now, I'm helping plan an Easter Egg Hunt between two churches and a daycare. There's a lot to do. An anxiety-inducing list of details to think about.

So to reduce the anxiety, I'm writing it all down. It's helping immensely. But I'm writing down everything now, not just the Easter stuff. It's a long list. An-8.5 x 11-sheet-of-paper-in-portrait-mode-filled-with-smallish-writing-long list. But writing it down allows me to clear it from my brain. So I don't worry about forgetting something. I'm discovering that the crazy-long list brings peace. Especially when I look at most of the things crossed off. It's pretty awesome.

Yes, there are mundane things that normal people don't have to write down. But I do.  Don't laugh.

But here's the problem. As I'm running out of paper and transitioning to a new week, I took the last few things off the list and transferred them to fresh paper. I think it was maybe 5 things. But in the transfer, I added a few. My list somehow exploded again. Yikes.

This is how next week's list STARTED. Gulp.

But with the 50 bazillion interruptions I get on a typical day at home, I find the list to be centering and quite helpful in completing ANY task. And it's nice to know, at the end of the week, when my house is a disaster yet again, I actually DID get some things done during the week. 

My list is my witness.


  1. Lists are the key to my sanity. As a person who was absent-minded even as a child, I cannot function effectively without lists. My boss used to tease me (but only gently since the results were good).
    We have lists of things to do pre-baby, lists of things we're trying to get done on the house this summer, lists of things I need to buy soon, and not just a grocery list but also the things I plan to make for dinner with said groceries (since I used to find myself staring at some random ingredient completely clueless as to what I bought it for).
    I think it's probably good for the world in general that most people can remember things like this without lists... But I admit that I can't! And don't get me started about my calendar...

    1. It's good to know I'm not the only one!

  2. The only one? Hardly. My ipod touch is my list machine, which explains why I'm nearly hysterical if a certain someone accidentally deletes one, aka a lobe of my brain. I currently have 31 lists going, some with sub-lists. Yes, my name is Anne and I make lists.

    1. Hmm. 31 lists. I have much to learn.

    2. For the record, they're not all "to-do" lists. There are "law" lists and "gospel" lists if you will. I'm Anne and I'm Lutheran too