Friday, December 01, 2006

I'm Making a List and Checking it Twice

[Argh. Blogger. You really annoy me sometimes. Spell checker not working right now.]

I have been overwhelmed with work for about the past two weeks, literally working 14 and 16 hour days. But, today all five of the proposals were due by 5PM. And by 4PM, they were all uploaded and submitted. Exhale.

So, now, I am catching up. Catching up on email, other projects I have going on that I have pushed aside for the last two weeks. Catching up on being with the kids in the middle of the day and in the evenings. Yes...catching up on blog entries and catching up on getting ready for the holiday season.

But, mostly what I am catching up on is my list making. I started my first list while the last grant I was submitting was still uploading on to the government's submission site. I had a few seconds, so I started a list. A list for work: clients I needed to follow up with, work I needed to give some attention to, things I needed to read and file.

A list for home: things to get at Target, things to do around the house, things to accomplish over the weekend and things to get for people for Christmas. On both lists is to go through other lists and organize the lists, plus update the family calendar (essentially, a big list).

So, you don't need to read too deep in to this one to realize that these lists make me feel in control, or at least like I am headed for being in control. This inital list making process is clearly my way of regaining control after a period of disciplining myself to "check-out" until my work is done. Once I have moved beyond the initial list, the lists are key to my feeling like I am maintaining control.

A simple example of how lists help me maintain my sense of control is my daily food journal. If I write it down, I am good. On days I don't write it down, forget it--I am totally out of control. A list, a journal, a documentation of my plans and thoughts allows me to maintain control and, when possible, quite frankly, sometimes control others. Not necesarrily in a bad way, in a loving, "honey-do" kind of way.

Do you see a theme emerging here? I am not ashamed of being a control freak for two reasons. 1) without it, I would not have accomplished as much as I have wanted to. 2) someone has to be in control, might as well be ME!

But, here is the thing. I try to be very honest about the fact that this is who I am and try to be aware of acknowledging this, but not using that as an excuse for dismissing others. I certainly work hard to be aware of how my actions affect others and what my actions say about me. But, go ahead, call me a control freak: I will proudly own it.


Anonymous said...

I'm with you, sister! I love making lists too. Makes me feel like I have a plan and a purpose. Do you ever have those things on your list that just keep getting transferred to the next list you make? There must be a psychological reason for it. I suppose it's a task that we really don't want to do!

Amanda Sue said...

i keep my lists in a spiral. then i move things forward from one list to the next what i don't get done.

i am officially a List Nerd.