Little Miss Organised makes a mistake...
This week I made a mistake. This isn't totally unheard of, I'm human and humans are fallible but this was an error so basic and intrinsic to what I do that I didn't even realise what I'd done and the effect it had on me.
You see, this started when I won a new contract- a big, intense, time hungry new contract. Don't get me wrong, I've worked everything out so that I know I can do it and fit everything in but I'm aware that this will change my working week significantly.
I found out that I'd been successful on Tuesday morning, by Tuesday afternoon I had decided that in order to start work in Monday morning I would feel happier if I were starting with a clean slate- with my clients, with my personal admin, with my jobs around the house and as such I started writing A LIST. Not a quick jot down of a few bits I needed to remember but an epic two page out pouring of all the little niggly jobs and outstanding tasks that I felt would give me that clean slate.
Wonderful, it was all there on the page and like any list I started with my Pomadoro time management technique and cracked on. However, every time I did one thing on the list I remembered a couple more. It just kept getting longer.
Wednesday night I fainted. Nothing too dramatic, I was sat down at the time and there's lots of other things going on right now so I'm not saying I did this to myself but I do think that what I was putting myself through contributed.
That's hindsight talking though, at the time I googled symptoms, blamed medications and the overly hot day... I phoned my friend (she's a paediatric nurse and constantly tells me she doesn't do adults but she's still my go to for common sense) and told her what had happened. She knew of the list because I'd proudly told her about it the day before, so she asked me what was on it.
"Well there's lots. Like putting up a trellis in the garden, painting the bannister, cleaning the windows, doing my accounts... loads really"
Silence ensued and then: "Most of those aren't important. You need to let them go"
Let. Them. Go? This was new, this was unheard of, I'm Little Miss Organised. I don't give up on a list. I sat and thought about what she'd said though, I'd given myself 3 days to do hundreds of things, I'd made myself ill and had to spend a whole day in bed as a result. Basically, I'd made a huge mistake.
I still believe lists are important- they are key for me. But lists only work if they are realistic, achievable and manageable... otherwise they're just a weight that drags you down.
Just a thought for the day and for you list haters out there. And, if anyone is curious, I have managed to complete 95% of my list… I’ll let go a bit more next time.