My children told me what they would like for Christmas this year by sticking lists to the fridge. It appears my obsessive list writing disorder has rubbed off on them!
Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without an array of lists. There’s one for the food shopping, one for gift buying, and another list of names and addresses for sending out your Christmas cards. A list is a helpful tool to keep you on track with jobs, tasks, and anything else that fills your brain on a day to day basis.
As a single mum, list writing is the one personal development tool that keeps me organised and calm. If it’s not on the list then it doesn’t get done! I know many of my friend and readers who hate writing lists and roll their eyes to the heavens when I start chattering on about it. Whether you love or loathe list writing, I hope the following ideas spark a little bit of creativity, a fond memory, or even a goal for the New Year.
First of all I want you to put aside your Christmas shopping list. Forget about frozen turkeys, parsnips, and picking up the cranberry sauce.
Now grab a pad and pen and give yourself the gift of five minutes to jot down a few things for each of the lists I’ve added below:
- List all the jobs you would love to try (yes, even astronaut).
- List all the cities you’ve visited and underline your favourite.
- List your five favourite books (ooh, that’s a tough one!).
- List the first three things you’d do/buy if you won a million pounds.
- List five things you’d save if you house was on fire (don’t count family as that’s too easy).
- List four people you would love to meet (dead or alive).
- List three wishes you would like to come true.
- List five nice things you’ve done for other people.
- List your favourite things about your family.
- List five things you would like to change in your life.
When I got my kids to do this exercise I was amused to find a two day school week, and five day weekend on my daughter’s list. My son added more takeaways to his. Their favourite cities were Barcelona and London, and I was very pleased to see my book, Oath Breaker, on their favourite book list – not at all biased!
Read back over your lists. Could you choose one of your favourite cities to visit next summer? If you would only save five things from the fire then do you need the ‘stuff’ in your house? Is it time for a de-clutter? What action steps can you take in 2018 to make your wishes come true? Remember all the favourite things you wrote about your family when you are all together this Christmas. Can you turn list number 10 into a New Year Resolution? Changes in your life only happen when you want them to. If they were important enough to write on a list, why aren’t they important enough to do in real life? Make it happen.
Writing a list is a hugely important part of my day, but why can’t we have a bit of fun along the way. It is the silly season after all!
How did you get on with your list writing? Pick one from each of your lists and write them in the comments.
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