A better list

Lists are great – a systematized, orderly way to keep yourself on task and keep track of tasks.

Except of course that lists are usually an excuse – an excuse to do everything but the real work we have to do.

Some lists, full of seemingly important stuff, actually just say:

  1. Stall
  2. Stall
  3. Procrastinate
  4. Put stuff off
  5. Stall some more
  6. Look busy
  7. Have a meeting that looks busy
  8. Etc.

(By the way, your inbox is just a fancy list.  And don’t get me started on your Facebook / Twitter feed).

So how about this: keep the list, work the list, but act based on the knowledge that you’ll never get to the end of the list.  Knowing that, why not commit, once a day, to add one thing to the list (just one!!) that’s hard or scary, and commit to getting that thing done today.

Hard and scary is, it turns out, a pretty great proxy for “worthwhile.”

One item, once a day, every day, that terrifies you.

It finally happened

Cranking through my inbox for a few hours doesn’t feel like real work.

Satisfying? Yes.

A relief?  Yes.

But not real work.

Pretty sure this is a good sign.

The work of blogging

The days I’m not ready to write, the days I don’t feel like I have something to say, the days that I have to burn the midnight oil, the days I have to scramble….those are the days I’m doing the work.

What is the work, exactly?  Many things, but partly it is earning the right to have the days when lightening strikes, the days full of great leaps forward, the days it comes easy.

This is how it is with everything: we do the hard work in between the peaks, we toil along, even when it isn’t pretty.  And when we get to the top, the view sure is beautiful, all the more so when you can share it with people that matter (all of you)

So thank you for helping me do the work.  I’m positive I wouldn’t do it without you.

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