When I open up to write the blog each day, there is a handy little widget that offers a suggestion of what to write about if one is stuck for inspiration. And today, it’s raining, I haven’t slept and there’s too much to do, so I am short of inspiration.
So I clicked on it.
It was a suggestion to make lists and let them create the writing. Which is fine and good. But there was this; “but really, who’s afraid of a list? A list is a friendly little thing: pragmatic, efficient, and hopeful”
Who is afraid of a list? Well, me actually. Indeed, I was delighted recently through twitter to find out that there is a word for it…according to the OED, pinaciphobia is a fear of lists.
Actually, phobia is too strong a word. But I am not happy around lists, I hate making them, and when somebody gives me one, I will do whatever I can to turn it into a not-list (what’s the word for that?) I know there are people who find lists helpful. I know there are even people who put things already done on the list for the pleasure of ticking it off (Yes, Beloved Other, I am looking at you – or would be if you read the blog! And I know he’s not alone….) And I am delighted that the world contains such people.
But I am really not one of them. LIsts merely serve to show me what I have so far failed to do. I gain no satisfaction from ticking things off (despite people assuring me I will), but only a growing sense of frustration from not getting it all done. I find the act of making a list stressful – since I know I forgetting something when I do that, and then, likely as not, I lose the list. And – somewhere in the deeper recesses – a list limits….. I know it doesn’t, but it feels like it does.
So, I operate without lists. Not entirely. I usually have a rudimentary list if I am going shopping. But it is indicative, not definitive. I rarely have a to-do list; it’s a sign of panic if I do – and the writing of it is usually in fact an exercise in procrastination. I (more or less) keep a diary, so I guess that is a list….
And as for the suggestion on the blog; it was not just about listing things to get or do. It was making lists of places visited, or books read or things like that. And that, I simply don’t get. Because that requires categorisation, and that – well, that’s a whole other area I simply don’t understand.
Mind you, it gave me something to write about……