Sunday, January 10, 2010

Everyday Pleasures #3 - Making Lists

I love lists.

Having an ongoing list like having access to a constant supply of supreme satisfaction, doled out in teeny tiny doses throughout your whole life.

I suppose I've always made some sort of list as an adult - grocery, Saturday tasks, Christmas gifts to buy - but they were little more than torn pieces of paper shoved into a pocket and discarded. But it was at COSI, where the concept of multi-tasking took on a whole other dimension, where I was turned on to a whole new way of looking at list-making. I give credit to my friend Allen, who refuses to accept that credit because he picked it up from someone else.

The system is little more than adding a little box at the beginning of an item. When the item is completed, the box gets checked. If the task no longer exists, it gets crossed off. If the item is moved to another list, it gets shaded in. Even describing the act gives me a twinge of pleasure.

There are somethings I resist putting on the list - things I'm not sure I'm committed to doing, things that are difficult, things that cannot be easily reduced into a simple, note-worthy item. Sometimes, the only way to know how I feel about something is to jump in and add it, understanding the desire to add that check mark might just be the thing to put it over the edge.

This weekend, I had a deadline that I was resisting and, instead, went about "clearing out" the items on a lingering list. I used the fumes of that buzz to push through my resistance and got it done.

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