My newfound love/hate with lists

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I’ve always loved to-do lists, the precision of spelling out tasks and the satisfaction of crossing them off. As I’ve mentioned before, they’re even more important now that I’m a mother, because I’m utterly unable to remember anything without them. To do: get more sleep? (I wish.)

On the other hand, lists also make it painfully obvious how little I accomplish in a day. I bought some small bookshelves for my son’s room about a month and a half ago, and it’s taken me until this morning to execute the plan I had of covering them with fabric and hanging them on the wall. (It was a multi-stage journey in which each successive step uncovered something else I needed, from a glue gun to anchors and drill bits.)

At the very least, this has made me much less aspirational when I choose which tasks to write down. “Empty compost bucket” — that I can do. Churn the pile, weed the garden, and think about planting some garlic? That’ll be on the list until spring.

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