I hate lists and I am really good at ignoring them.
The way I was raised, a list was something you got when you had already screwed up so badly you needed to be publicly humiliated, public meaning my sister and only up until she moved away. (When she was in university the list would have had to be read to her over the phone. I was a child pre-internet.)
Adding to my aversion to lists I suspect in past lives I lived in occupied countries that had lists posted in public squares with rules like:
- Citizens must wear funny hats on Wednesdays and Fridays.
- Citizen’s will eat fish on Fridays but not the good kind, and only the heads
- Citizen’s will eat their hats on Tuesdays and Thursdays
- Mondays are “buy a new funny hat” days
I have a pair of jeans with several scraps of paper in the pockets that have, MILK, BAGELS, CHEESE written on them. I always have to buy the same things it seems. All a list seems to do for me is confirm when I forget to buy something. When I am confronted by the obvious lack of something on returning from shopping I take out the list and say, “Yup, there it is. I forgot it.” and then I throw the list in the garbage. The times I get everything on the list the list stays in my pocket.: MILK, BAGELS, CHEESE.
When I was a young mother there was a book called “The Mother’s Almanac” and from this I got the great advice to only make a list at the end of the day for all the things I had done and never at the beginning of all the things I HAD TO DO. It saved my life. At the end of the day I was exhausted and never got around to making the list but I fell into my solid sleep with the thought of all the things I had managed to complete against great odds.
My email provider has a great little calendar with it and if I actually had a lot of work to do it would come in handy I am sure but for making up lists of things to do it is even more useless than scraps of paper in my back pocket.