To-Do Lists

I never quite knew how disorganized I was until I was completely responsible for myself.  I worked for a company for 20 years and one day it abruptly came to an end.  I still have mixed emotions about how it went down.  I was comfortable there and there is a lot to be said for comfort.  I had been at a time when I needed that comfort.  Our son was in a special needs pre-school and I liked knowing I didn’t have to worry about my job.  I was settled into the job and I was able to do it with my eyes closed.

I have now come to realize that comfort is death.  I was making no progress on my career.  I didn’t even know if I wanted to remain in the field I was in.  I have recently decided to take matters into my own hands and I have taken this time to truly re-evaluate my life and my career and what I want to be doing with my life.  There is a lot to get through and lot to think about and a lot I want to accomplish before any real decisions are made as to the next step in my journey.  The problem is that I didn’t know how to even start.  I was learning to be responsible for myself all over again.  The funny thing is that the thing that got me on the right track was as simple as writing a list.  I would make fun of my mother (all in good fun, of course) about all of her lists.  She would talk about the satisfaction of crossing things off the list.  After several months of floundering, I sat down and I made a list.  I think it was the first time I had done it in years.  Today was the day I used a list, and today was the most productive day that I have had in years.  I have friends who say that the last thing they do every day is sit down and write out the list for the next day.  I sat down tonight to write tomorrows list.  I thought tomorrow was going to be an easy day.  I have 15 things on the list to take care of.  If I didn’t write it down, most of those things would not have gotten done.  Today’s list had almost 20 things on it.  18 things got done.  One thing couldn’t get done because I am waiting on someone, and the last, well, I just ran out of day.

I am hoping that this becomes a habit because I am really trying to solidify that first habit, to be proactive.  I am finding you can’t be proactive without a plan.  Acting without a plan is the definition of reactive.  I no longer want to be reactive.  I no longer want to wait for things to happen to me.