How
would we exist without a list?
We
have to make a list to go buy groceries. Then there is the famous ‘Honey-do
list’ of jobs around the house that need to be done. When the new year starts
some make New Year’s resolutions while others just set goals they want to
pursue in the new year. Either way the chances are whichever we choose they end
up being items on our list. 
A great deal of what I have to do is represented by
the emails in my inbox, sitting there until I do something with them and they
are handled or filed. That means that inbox is a sort of list too.
I
had a friend who was the ultimate list-maker, she even had a list of what lists
she had. She spent all of her time making sure nothing was overlooked and
ensuring that everything she needed to do was safely on a list somewhere. She
was successful, I don’t think anything was overlooked. The only problem was,
she spent all of her time planning to do things and little if any time doing
them.
A
list is only good if we spend time working items off that list. A good day is
when we take more off the list than we add to it. You see, our list is
immortal, it will never go away. Not only that, but when we pass on our list
survives us to be added to someone else’s list, along with the task of our
final arrangements. I find it interesting to think that our list may actually
be the same list that has passed down for generations and even though all of
the old items have long since been resolved, the list has lived on.
But
used correctly a list can be invaluable. It can help us prioritize and focus
our activities. That use to be very hard, necessitating constant re-writing of
lists. No more. With word processing simple cut and paste functions can
re-arrange priorities on a list in seconds.
I
keep my to-do list in an email which I send when changes are made to myself and
to my wife. That keeps it up at the top on my inbox (my other list) and insures
that it will always be right in front of me as I have to work that inbox
constantly. I work that inbox from both ends, from the top to knock items off
that require little to keep the number of items in there down, then I go to the
bottom to concentrate on items that have been in there a while.
Some
things stay on my list for a long time until finally I decide “I’m just not
going to do that.” That in itself is a resolution and the item can come off the
list. There’s more than one way to do anything.