Probably moreso than the rest of the year, the list is king right now. Most self employed people are big fans of the to do list, but with festive feast shopping lists and gifting ones too, we’re all living and dying by the quality of our lists right now (and if you’re not, you should count yourself very lucky)!
But a list can be so much more than an endless series of tasks or things to buy so here’s the blog idea that’s been rolling around my head this week. A lot of us are incredibly attached to our to do lists and so, trying out other kinds of writing in this format is safe and freeing and I think a lot of us could benefit from writing lists that aren’t taxing and that could bring us joy. Here’s a few of my own ideas, and of course, feel free to add any of your own in the comments section!
1. Good things that happened in your day.
This could be there shortest list on here because even if you challenge yourself to simply write down one good thing each day, this will serve you. It can be a commitment, but giving yourself just five minutes to reflect on a compliment you received, or a beautiful sight you saw or a great meal you ate, over time will make you feel more positively about your life overall. These lists can be long or short, contain huge, life changing good news or just fleeting moments of loveliness and that’s all part of the process! Even the worst days have one positive moment, I promise you.
2. Your favourite foods to eat or cook
I think most of us live in waves of eating well, looking after ourselves and finding enjoyment in cooking and feeding others, and waves of just… not. In those weeks where it’s Tuesday but somehow you’ve already eaten pasta and pesto 3 times or you feel like the only recipe you know is (tbf a still solid) chilli… actually take a second to think about what you’ve enjoyed cooking before, or a beautiful meal somebody made you that you’ve never forgotten. Even if you cook (or order) just one of them, you’re bound to shake yourself out of a culinary rut
3. Friends you’ve not seen in a while
Okay so some relationships don’t end on great terms and some definitely run their course but we’ve all got one or two friends who we simply drifted away from. They may think of you sometimes as well and reaching out is the only way you’ll know.
4. Dream destination list
We’re ~sort of~ in a place where we can go beyond our town or city now, and even if you’re not, you can still be planning for further down the line. Do it with friends - if someone else wrote the same place as you, why not at least research the trip together?
5. A list of your achievements!
Okay this one is stolen from ADHD research. I think there’s potentially a few versions of this, basically depending on what time scale is relevant for you. I think we could all stand to take a look back at the past year - or five - and really mull over what we’ve accomplished, be it emotionally, physically, in our relationships or careers. We’re all growing all the time and we’re usually too close to see it. On a smaller level, when we do have an endless list to work through and are feeling like we’re not achieving as much as we need, just reflecting on the day can be good. Not everything we do in a day started on the to do list, congratulate yourself instead of just moving on to the next thing.
6. Your friends addresses
Not in a creepy way! The address book is mostly obsolete at this point but keeping a note of your friends addresses is so useful! How lovely is it to be able to surprise a friend with a gift or a letter rather than having to ask for their address first? The sneakiness is the cherry on top!
Okay this sort of counts I think? Well, are your playlists in order? Do you have the perfect background music for when friends come to visit or that you work really well to or the playlist that can lift you out of a really crappy mood? My personal recommendation for the latter is soul classics btw, it’s honestly impossible to stay upset to even the most emotional Motown songs because they’re so impressive. Beyond the obvious, the playlist is also the modern equivalent of a mixtape, so I think there’s still the feeling of a grand gesture if you’re making one for your bestie or your other half.
8. Big things you want to happen
They say you’re 42% more likely to achieve a goal you write down. I guess it’s a miniature form of accountability, but whatever it is, get it on paper!
I’m going to bring this to a close now and hope that this is plenty for you to mull over in your downtime :) feel free to let me know below if you tried any of these and any ideas the act of writing may have given you to move forward with.