I've Got a Little List

Wednesday February 26, 2020

How many of you, on seeing this title, are now humming the song from the Mikado, " ...They'd none of them be missed..."?

Well, this isn't a list of persons whom I wish I could remove from my life - although, now you come to mention it – but, no, it's not that.

This is about that wonderful conduit to productiveness, the list.

Most of us make lists. Shopping lists, lists of errands to run, lists of things we need to pack for that holiday, lists of chores to be done around the house, lists of things to do at work; lots and lots of lists.

Most days, experiencing a feeling of overwhelm, I make a list of everything I must do. Just the act of writing everything down gets it out of my head and traps it neatly on paper where it has less power to fill me with nebulous feelings of foreboding.

On Monday Lex wrote about acknowledging how far we've come, rather than becoming discouraged by how far we still have to go, and that made me think about my lists.

There's always a feeling of accomplishment when you tick things off your list. Sometimes I even write things I've already done onto my list just so I can have the pleasure of ticking them off.

One of the things I have learned, of recent years, is to tame my lists.

My lists used to be long, unwieldy things. Those lists wound, like giant anacondas, off the table, onto the floor, curled around the furniture, out of the door into the street… Well, maybe that's a slight exaggeration, but the lists were far too long. No one could ever hope to accomplish all the tasks in a day or even a week – possibly even a year. I have learned to make the lists a LOT shorter.

On the other hand, a list of only three things ticked off is – unsatisfying.

My Monday list (I choose this because Monday is my "domestic" day) might be:

1. Clean the House
2. Cook dinners for the week
3. Write Moodscope Blog

I have found, however, the list is far more rewarding if I break down each item into smaller parts.

1. Clean the House:
1.1. Wash up
1.2. Sweep kitchen floor
1.3. Vacuum Hallway
1.4. Ditto Sitting Room
1.5. Clean bathrooms:
1.5.1. Upstairs
1.5.2. Downstairs cloakroom

I won't go on, but that should make it clear enough.

This breaking everything down into smaller parts means, especially when I don't complete the whole task, at least I can see I've accomplished something.

I confess there have been times when I have listed:

1. Get Up:
1.1. Get out of bed
1.2. Clean teeth
1.3. Shower
1.4. Dress – in real clothes
1.5. Make coffee
1.6. Make and eat breakfast

Because, sometimes, just completing that list is like running a marathon.

So, yesterday was Monday. I cleaned some of the house and I cooked the dinners. Some things on the list got ticked off and some didn't.

Today I'm writing the blog.


Oh, and that song? Here's a link to my favourite version – warning – not the original words! http://bit.ly/2T9E1by

A Moodscope member.

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.


Comments are viewable only by members. Register Now to participate in the discussion.

Already have an account? Login to leave a comment.

There are 51 comments so far.

What is Moodscope?

Moodscope members seek to support each other by sharing their experiences through this blog. If you’d like to receive these daily posts by email, just sign up to Moodscope now, completely free of charge.

Moodscope is an innovative way for people to treat their own low mood problems using an engaging online tool. Anyone in the world can accurately assess and track daily mood scores over a period of time. We have proved that the very act of measuring, tracking and sharing mood can actually lift it. Join now.

Blog Archive


Posts and comments on the Moodscope blog are the personal views of Moodscope members, they are for informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice. Moodscope makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this blog or found by following any of the links.

Moodscope will not be liable for any errors or omissions in this information nor for the availability of this information. The owner will not be liable for any losses, injuries, or damages from the display or use of this information.