Tuesday, December 22, 2015

TO DO or not.

"Writers should not make TO DO lists"
 – what?  Gasp!  This can’t be right.  I almost close the book that suggests this, but I have agreed with much of what the author has said to this point.  I’ll keep reading.   

A bit of background; I believe in TO DO lists. I start my day by making a list.  TO DO lists can be wonderful for simple endeavors – laundry is laundry and if it is on my list then folding the last clean item and putting it in the drawer means I can cross laundry off my list.  Simple.  I use my lists for more complex goals as well.  And I monitor how well they work.  And they do work for me.  So I doubt that I will swear off them, but I read on. 

“You can all but feel a whip being cracked at your rear, can’t you? (When faced with a To Do list) Instead, set yourself up with daily intentions…” 

Hmmm, I think.  Are they not the same thing?  But as I read the different examples of a TO DO list and a list of intentions I begin to understand.  The difference lies in the intensity and achievability.  And there is a good point being made about the creative process.  Creativity does poorly in response to the pressure of hard and fast goals. The intention list serves as a friendly nudge in the right direction.    

So, I am happy I can still use lists but I will switch to a kinder and gentler list of intentions to help me fill the empty page.