I’m Listless

I have certainly had my “bouts of listless depression”, especially in the last twelve months. I just can’t seem to shake this mood, or discover its fundamental source. But, then I did

I am listless when I am list less.

No, that’s not me in the picture. That guy has WAY too much hair.

I will admit it, I have been a list maker all my life. Practically everything must be written down before it can be officially accomplished. Somethings do happen on the spur of the moment. Things like the perfect title for a post here suddenly pops into my mind. But for the most part, lists are my lifeblood.

When I was in the corporate world, that is before PCs, I wrote my weekly lists on 3×5 index cards. I kept that six-inch high pile of cards that I had generated over the years because I just couldn’t throw them away. Eventually, I decided to ceremoniously burn them in my shop stove. That gave them the proper goodbye.

For the last 30 years, my lists have resided on my calendar app in my Mac. I can go back at least ten years now to see what I did on the day this post was made. You could say I am addicted to lists, but I kinda think I found the perfect organizer of life.

When I decided to go on my recent 6,000-mile trek across the South and Southwest I decided I would jump out of my comfort zone and forego lists. I wanted to make that month long journey epic. Instead, being list less I almost doomed it to failure. Without lists, I tended to ramble aimlessly through each day. Those list less days were a “lesson-learned” about my dependence on lists.

I finally learned my lesson, that without lists I am listless. To make a purpose for each day, I need a list of what I want to accomplish, and maybe more importantly, to be able to cross it off as completed at the end of each day.

My listlessness has subsided considerable since this revelation, and I am definitely happy about that.

4 thoughts on “I’m Listless

  1. Interesting! We have that in common, RJ. I have been listless lately, too (in the true sense of the word). But one thing I know about myself is that writing something down will make me want to cross it off my list. 🤣 Maybe it’s a holdout from my work life. Anyway, every week I have been adding two big tasks that I’ve been procrastinating. And every week so far they get done. I also have smaller tasks and appointments on my calendar, but I know the bigger tasks are nagging at me and adding to my sense of unease.

    The pandemic and lockdowns have made me somewhat lethargic, and I’m trying to get myself back to my old energy level. It’s spotty, but some days it’s what gets me going.


    1. Adding two big things to your list each week is a wonderful thing, Laurel. Like you, one of the reasons I do it is when I see it in writing, it just seems more real and there is a sense of accomplishment seeing them done.

      I’m still working on list of things from shutting down my marriage. Today I finally cancelled a couple of accounts that my wife had. They hadn’t been used in over a year, but I was still getting mail about them.

      I think the pandemic and lockdowns have made us all lethargic. Will we ever return to normal, or is this the new normal? who knows.


  2. I will add something to my daily “to-do” list that I have just completed, simply for the pleasure of crossing it off. That is one of the indications of a serious list user.


    1. Yeah, I kinda think the pleasure of marking them off is a big part of it, Bob. The other, is that as I am getting older, if something is not on a list it seems to quickly be forgotten and therefore uncompleted. 🤪


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