I hate to-do lists. I hate making them, and even more, I hate facing a long list of to-do’s. If it were something I wanted to do, I would have done it already and it wouldn’t have to go on the list.
Honey-do lists are even worse. If something is on my own list, I can ignore it for a while, sometimes even long enough that it is no longer relevant and can be crossed off. (Yes, that’s just as satisfying as crossing off a finished to-do.) When Bethany puts something on a Honey-do list, I can’t ignore it. If I try to, she’ll be peering over my shoulder, poking, and prodding until it gets done. (Or maybe that’s just my guilty conscience…)
About a year ago, Bethany put something on my Honey-do list that I knew was trouble. She wanted a dry-erase board hung on the fridge. I procrastinated. And procrastinated. And procrastinated. Finally, one evening I had literally run out of things to do. To try to look busy I was reorganizing my pocket lint, rotating the white lint to colored pockets and vice-versa (diversity is good for lint) when Bethany subtly reminded me about the dry erase board. She wasn’t going to put down the baseball bat until the board was hanging on the fridge so I got to work.
The reason I wanted to put it off wasn’t that hanging the board would be difficult. I already knew how I was going to hang it and had everything I needed. I knew it would only take a few minutes. The problem was that dry-erase boards are great places to write lists. I knew it was only a matter of time before the shopping lists gave birth to a to-do list for Bethany, where difficult to-do’s would somehow jump across the board to a to-do list with my name at the top. And if Bethany put them there, they had to be done. No shoving the clothes under the bed and running outside the play. Those eyes in the back of her head aren’t limited to watching the kids!
That board has hung there for over a year now, and try as I might, I can’t get rid of my Honey-do list. Occasionally I add a few easy things to cross off early in the day to build momentum. Wake up. Get out of bed. Eat breakfast. Put on shoes. Momentum! But for some reason, building momentum is tiring. Instead of the momentum carrying me through morning chores, work, mowing the yard and cleaning Mega Desk, momentum stumbles along until lunch time then comes to a screeching halt. And we all remember from science class that an object at rest tends to stay at rest. Momentum won’t be going any farther.
There hangs the list, half finished, but not even begun. Waiting for another day.