Why I Love Lists

My father is very meticulous in everything he does. I remember seeing him making lists as a child. While I saw him making grocery lists, expenses list, things to buy list etc. I have gone a step further and become a compulsive list maker. I make lists for everything… things to pack for a trip, list of friends to invite for dinner over the next few months, the dinner menu for a get-together, things to do for diwali cleaning, gifts ideas, ideas for blog posts, bills to pay, list of eateries to explore… then there are wish-lists for books, gadgets… I even have bucket lists and am in process of making an anti-bucket list too. My notepads on my bedside table,  a pocket diary in my bag and my smartphone has lists of all these things and much more.

Today, let me list the reasons why I love (obsessed is a better word) making lists…2013-10-17 16.21.43

  • Lists help me to organize better. Listing the task into smaller do-able parts makes the daunting task less intimidating and everything happens smoothly as I know what needs to be done and when. For example, Diwali Cleaning usually gives us heebie jeebies, initially. But with a list like this, (this is my last year’s Diwali Cleaning list), the task appears simpler and less overwhelming.
  • Lists keep me focussed. With a list in hand, I can review from time to time the important stuff that needs to be finished first. It keeps me on track and focussed in case I stray away.
  • Lists are time savers. Since I have already planned and/or thought about the task in advance, I can finish the job easily on time and without any last minute rush.
  • Lists eliminate stress. Needless to say, with better planning and better time management, I am free from unwanted stress.
  • Lists acts as great reminders. They help me to remember what I have already done and what is still pending. And with writing a list I am usually not forgetting any important thing.
  • Lists increase the happiness and satisfaction quotient. Nothing is more rewarding and satisfying than seeing the tick against the tasks that you have accomplished.
  • Lists evoke nostalgia. Lists are actually the chronicles of your life. If you are writing the various lists you generate in a notebook, you can get an account of your life during a particular period. For example, the list below is for the things that we needed after marriage, to make our home. And this list always takes me back in time… how we planned, the discussions we had about the curtain colour (how I was stuck on ‘mera wala green!), the shops we scoured between Borivili and Andheri…  And today, when I saw this notepad again, I am smiling on noting that one thing has still not made its entry in our home from this list. Yes, even after 17 years! It’s the ironing board, which is still unchecked and I am smiling at why it is so. This notepad has the list of 14 friends we had invited for our first house-warming…. the names have took my heart to a time travel… it’s been ages we spoke to so many of them and only with one we are in regular touch…

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Are you a list person like me? Do share the lists that you usually maintain.

Linking this to 7 Days of Rediscovering Your Blogging Groove – Day 1 : Write a List!

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50 thoughts on “Why I Love Lists

  1. I looooved this post since I am also obsessed with lists. But I am not good at maintaining lists like you. That’s a great idea, writing them down on a notepad. My lists are usually on the phone or on bits of paper which I discard after the tasks are done.

  2. I am not really a list person (except for the grocery shopping lists), but do use them once in a while when some big task has to be done. I particularly like your point about lists evoking nostalgia. That makes me think! Didn’t think of lists in that way until I read this 🙂 Good post, Shilpa!

    • Yes Ma’am. have a notepad which is titled ‘Our Home Sweet Home’… too cliched but that’s the one 😀 And it is in safekeeping among hundreds of other old letters, cards, notepads, diaries, slam books, autograph books etc 😀

  3. *Raises hand and joins the compulsive list makers list* 😀

    I actually make very similar lists, Shilpa 🙂 Good to know we are not a dying breed. And oh, yes, I love writing them down on paper. One of the few times I admire my handwriting 😉

    • Wow. you too, Shailaja! Awesome. No, we will die without our lists 😀
      LOL @ handwriting part. I was comparing my writing in these two pics… 1997 and 2013 😀

  4. There was a time when I lived by lists. But now I prefer to be spontaneous. The only time I make lists is when I go grocery shopping. Lists invoking nostalgia was an interesting point. I can see how that would trigger memories.

    • Agree, grocery shopping lists are a must. I have seen, without them, I usually buy so much of unnecessary stuff too 😛 Oh yes, I showed the notepad from 1997 to KG, this morning and it was fun to indulge in reminiscence 🙂

  5. Shilpa i am a list person too. Both my dad and mom are very organized. my mom lists in a small notepad and a slate which she hangs in the kitchen while my dad maintains a diary. I have an organizer and an account book where i maintain accounts and like you even i have a book where we made lists for our new home 8 years ago like carpentry things, tiles, awnings etc., It evokes a multitude of warm emotions:)

    But that said, i also end up missing the lists/chits in the bag while i shop.

    • Wow! Are we soul sisters, Asha?! I have so many note pads and yearly organizers and some from my work too! I remember that at work, the first thing that I would while the computer would take its time to boot up was to make a to-do list for the day and it was so helpful. I pulled out one organizer of 2003 and it was such a happy feeling to remember the good old work days. And like wise for home things too. And yes, even I have chits in my bags 😀 I liked your mom’s slate idea 🙂

  6. No kidding… I used to love making and reading Myspace lists. Not many people will admit to that. I recall when I discovered bucket lists a few years ago and promptly orchestrated a poem about them, written by half a dozen girls.

  7. Lovely post Shilpa…almost makes me want to convert to a list-writer…but…I’m listless when it comes to organizing (sorry for the poor pun). When something really needs sorting…I use excel…but that’s mostly in life-death situations 😆

  8. Making lists is the final confirmation of a person wanting to be as perfect as possible.
    Do you know what they say,every daughter adores her Father .
    Shilpa,if these notes are yours,then you have a very impressive handwriting

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