Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Resistance is Futile

When I make lists and check off what I've done I like it. Yet I have a strange aversion to them nevertheless.

Years ago a fellow planner, who was in Toastmasters when I was, gave a speech that she named "listless". It was about a day when she lost her list. She always had lists. Without one she became disoriented, unable to function, wanting to sleep more. All the symptoms I feel just about every day.

This young woman is highly organized and lives in a spectacularly immaculate home. She also came from privilege so I managed to harbor a bit of resentment against her. I have always felt like the bumbling bull in the china shop and never was it so apparent as when I visited her. She was petite, attractive, well put-together, and lived in this perfect place, while I was big, sloppy, forgetful, unable to keep things together, and lived in a small overcrowded and undercleaned place. I lived with two understandably resentful acting-out daughters while she perfectly parented one lovely little girl, whose kindergarten and preschool artwork, perfectly framed, graced the walls.

Perhaps it was this envy or resentment that I let spread over into listland. More likely I just tend to see the overorganized as horrifying. So I resist.

I still resist, to this day, even as I use programs like EZ To-Do (a small listmaker that lives in my computer) to write up my lists. I fail to open the program most days, so miss the advantage of checking things off and feeling fulfilled.

Oddly, I don't have this problem with the goals program (joesgoals). It's just different enough. It tracks goals, not little irritating errands and cleaning jobs.

Therefore, I will add "use list" to my goals! And no longer will I have to resist.


Kim said...

Over the years, I have learned never to envy anyone, no matter how glorious their lives look. More often than not, their lives aren't so perfect under the surface, and I wouldn't trade places with them for anything.

Judith said...

Me too. Rarely is anything as it seems from a distance.