I'm great at making lists. I can think of all the things that need to be done and sometimes even the order in which they should be done. My head is full of lists. Sometimes my wallet is full of lists. I have daughters who like making lists, too. My mother never shops for groceries without a list. Microsoft Outlook's task lists used to be my favorite part of having an office job.
Actually following the list is a different story, however. The only thing I crave more than having definitive rules and boundaries for a situation is breaking all the definitive rules and boundaries in a situation.
I rarely stick to a shopping list (I always remember something along the way, or find something BOGO or for a really great price). And lately, my to-do lists have gone mostly unfinished, in part because we have cable again (probably not the wisest move but I do enjoy having a few channels we didn't have before) and in part because I've been unmotivated. I know we're moving in the spring (but have no idea where to yet) and that really makes me want to put projects off because why? And we were recently so legitimately busy that for two days the dishwasher went untouched.
I've decided to start with the other to-do list I've been slowly building in my head. Partly because it's more fun but also because I think fulfilling this particular list will bring the focus and happiness necessary to want to check off items on my daily home-oriented other to-do lists.
I want to make a monthly effort to spend time with friends. Amazingly I no longer do this. A couple of years ago, I was making weekly efforts and maybe overdid it sometimes with the socializing (which was new to me after years of only hanging out and doing things during school hours). Being a newlywed has made me want to spend most of my free time with my sweetie, but I think it's time I give us both a break and focus on meeting up with other friends sometimes (or even going to the movies alone, which I love).
Another something I want to try is volunteering with Special Olympics. My mother did this for several years and loved it. Recently, a friend in Atlanta spent her weekend with Special Olympians and couldn't say enough good things. I'm going to look into it this week.
I want to stop talking about work at home. Most of my coworkers are delightful, but my job is endlessly frustrating, and I know my family is sick of hearing about it. This will be the hardest thing for me, even harder than....
The last thing on this list (for now) is to start driving with no radio or music on when I am alone. Not every time, but sometimes. A couple of years ago, when I first went back to work after years of being a stay-at-home-mom, my pastor Paula suggested to me that I drive home from work in quiet so I would be ready to take on the noise of home once I pulled in the driveway. It helped a lot.
What little thing could you do to improve your life?