To do lists.
I have a love-hate relationship with them.
I love writing things down on paper. ( total writing nerd alert, I know)
But I hate how long the list looks sometimes.
I love crossing things off.
But I hate when the list gets longer.
I love feeling accomplished and organized.
But I hate feeling like a failure and out of control.
I love when I CAN.
I hate when I CAN’T.
Did you know there are 18 different to do list apps?
One such app has a great mission statement…
Ahhh… the promise of ” feeling calm & in control”…
But alas, would a loud ding sent by your ever-present phone actually help the situation?
Or hinder it?
And do lists really create peace of mind?
Did you know that Benjamin Franklin is often considered the “grandfather of lists?”
In fact, he was extremely list oriented.
Below is a picture of one such daily list.
( history buffs… get ready)
Notice the questions that he posed-
Morning question : “What good shall I do today?”
Evening question : “What good have I done this day?”
There’s breakfast, work, dinner & even “put things in their places” & “conversation” on Dear Ol’ Ben’s list. But I cannot help but focus on HIS focus.
And a conscious effort to embark and actually do it each and every morning, combined with an evaluation of the “goodness” of his day.
So incredibly inspiring.
Here’s another idea.
Why couldn’t we just pray over our lists and then
Would that be so wrong?
How about you emphasized the little victories of life ( you found a missing sock) and de-emphasized the anxieties of the looming “un-done?”
I will share a personal example.
For a few years back, I joined TWITTER. And it has been invaluable. The connections I have made with the writing world… ( My AGENT!!) have been incredible. But recently, I have noticed that I’m slightly distracted by the productivity of my
pencil-clad comrades and more aware of own proverbial treading water.
How much are THEY writing??? She was up at 5 am, and writing? She wrote 3 manuscripts already this month? Jeesh.
I didn’t write today…. or this week….
But I took care of my kids. And ate breakfast! And changed out of my yoga pants!!!
Oh wait. No, I didn’t.
Crap, I’m hungry. And where’s Quinn????
But you know what I did do?
I changed 2 sentences in one my stories.
And although it slightly resembles a creepy ransom note with its jagged cuts and pieces of tape patching it back together… it got to leave the “What the heck was I thinking when I wrote this?” pile.
And now it’s freaking awesome.
Little victories, people. Celebrate them.
So…. is it the quantity or the quality of the things getting done?
I am absolutely not suggesting we all go live in the clouds, blissfully unaware and unconcerned with our “to-do’s.”
It’s quite the opposite.
I’m challenging you ( and myself) to evaluate that load-bearing list and see what truly needs to be on it.
If an action item came off, what would replace it?
A long overdue phone call?
A peaceful walk up to school?
A moment of quiet amidst the chaos?
Something where you did “good?”
And would THAT be so bad?
From the Serenity Prayer
God grant us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, the courage to change the things we can, and the wisdom to know the difference.
And pray over that list.
Afterwards, all there is really left to do
BONUS DIY- March “Loom & Bloom” Wreath
10′ wooden loom
a favorite bloom or 2
wooden sign ( found on the Valentine’s clearance at Joann’s!) or anything fun!
Couldn’t be more simple, right?
Step 1: Lay out your greens on your loom however you’d like. You can completely cover it, or go for a halfway covering look, like I did.
Step 2: Using the floral wire, attach the greens to the wooden loom.
Step 3: put your sign on your loom and decide where you’d like it. Then turn your wooden sign over and draw dots where it hits the loom/greens. Using your glue gun, pieces of felt/ material and the floral wire- glue down the wire first and cover with felt to secure in place.
Step 4: secure/ arrange your sign onto the loom. *
Now, I had hoped to secure the sign to the loom in 2 places- but when I tied the “h” to the left side of the loom, the rest of the sign just snuggled into the greens. I added a glue dot to secure the “o” to the right side. No wire needed.
Step 5: I pulled the bloom & the leaves off its stem and then re-glued the leaves to the flower.
Step 6: Pick a location for your flower and secure with hot glue.
Enjoy its simple beauty.