Lists in my life




This was the title of my autobiographical piece for this month’s local radio programme and I include parts of it here.  I was under the impression that everyone made lists, perhaps not as ardently as I do, but lists nevertheless.  How else can you remember everything you need to do?

Lists have and will play a significant role in my life.  As a child of the 50s, education required learning by rote.  This included preparing for the 11+ exam using a text book called “First Aid in English”.  This book contained lists of, amongst other things, similes, antonyms, synonyms and group terms for animate and inanimate nouns such as a bench of bishops and a clutch of eggs.  Quizzing each other from this book was considered fun in our household before we got a television!

Lists continued to be a factor in my life in the form of to do lists, shopping lists and packing lists; packing lists for weekends, main holidays, UK or abroad.  At work or at home, my day begins with a list whether mental or written.   Some of you will be thinking I suffer from OCD, others may think I am super efficient, when in fact I am neither.  I seem to live in organised chaos and items on the daily to do list such as wash the kitchen floor and tidy out the porch are frequently carried forward several times.   Listless I truly believe my life would be reduced to total chaos.
I have recently found an exciting new app for my laptop and phone which allows you to, quote, bring your life's work together in one digital workspace.  I still prefer a pen and paper which gives me a feeling of security plus the satisfaction of ticking off the completed items on the list.
The media are increasingly using the technique of the listicle aimed at an audience that they believe can’t manage to concentrate on much of anything.  The listicle is an amalgamation of a list and an article so, for example, a heading, such as “5 must-haves for the fashionable woman this Spring”   would be followed by five bullet points, each of which would be fleshed out with further explanation and detail.

How much do lists play in your life?

Comments

  1. I love lists and have blogged about how important they are in my life. I go through phases, though. Some weeks I hardly make lists at all. Other weeks I have short, medium and long-term lists. When I was a teenager I created lists of pop groups and pop songs. I would have loved the lists of songs etc that are on the Internet now. As for listicles, they say that this is the most popular form of blog post. If you call a post "The 5 best...." you apparently attract a much higher level of traffic. I've tried that too and it does seem to work but who wants to divide their every thought into five easy bite-sized bits?

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    1. As children, we even made lists of car numbers - not as many in those days!

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  2. I love lists and have blogged about how important they are in my life. I go through phases, though. Some weeks I hardly make lists at all. Other weeks I have short, medium and long-term lists. When I was a teenager I created lists of pop groups and pop songs. I would have loved the lists of songs etc that are on the Internet now. As for listicles, they say that this is the most popular form of blog post. If you call a post "The 5 best...." you apparently attract a much higher level of traffic. I've tried that too and it does seem to work but who wants to divide their every thought into five easy bite-sized bits?

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  3. As a trained Librarian, of course I LOVE putting things in my life in systematic order. That means I like lists, and I do use them, just not as much as you. For daily stuff like groceries shopping or household tasks, I don't have lists. More irregular tasks which I could easily forget are written in my diary, so that I will come across them in time when I open my diary at that particular date.
    When I prepare for a party or a special meal or cake to take to someone else's party, I have a list on paper for the items I need to buy.
    I have never in my life used a list for packing for a trip, for business or leisure.

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    1. You must have a better memory than I have. I went shopping listless this week and ran out of everything!

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  4. I have quite a few lists. Not as many as my husband though - his to do list can include instructions to make lists ... He's very organised though, so obviously it works.

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    1. Making lists makes me feel organised and I'm with Gary about having making a list on my to do list!

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  5. I have lots of to-do lists for writing projects, jobs that need doing around the house and garden, books I want to read, places I want to visit etc. The problem is remembering to look at them and tick things off!
    I've also started to use my shopping lists as a memory exercise. I write a list but don't look at it until I think I've got everything I need in my basket or trolley. Then I check to make sure I haven't forgotten anything essential. I'm hoping it will keep the little, grey cells working.

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    1. My little, grey cells aren't working. I haven't ticked things off on my digital app; back to pencil and paper.

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  6. Lists! I love lists. I use them a lot when I'm writing. I split my work into fragments and reward myself by crossing them out. Then there are lists for subbing, and lists for editing and lists for research. Without lists I am nothing,

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    1. Yes lists are my salvation!

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  7. I always use list! From planning my day to packing my bags/suitcase! I think ill have a look at the new app that you mention, and then I can save some paper!

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    1. My app hasn't proved too helpful so I'm back to the pencil and paper method for my lists!

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  8. Are you listening to Susan Calman's Radio 2 series 'Listomania'? V funny lady.

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    1. I don't usually tune in to Radio 2 but I've added "checking for it on listen again" to my to do list!

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