A few months ago, overwhelmed with a mountain of niggling jobs that desperately needed to be tackled but were slowly sliding into the murky abyss of laziness and procrastination, I set out to organize my thoughts in the hopes of finally getting at least a few of these jobs accomplished.
I opened Outlook Tasks and, one by one, added several of the more obvious “to do” items to the list. One thing reminded me of another, then another, and after a short time I had assembled what I thought was a pretty comprehensive checklist of some of my more important and long-outstanding projects.
“Good for you!” I thought, giving myself a rather smug pat on the back as I reviewed the list. Finally, I’d done something! Sure, I hadn’t actually accomplished any of the jobs… but I’d made a start, right? The first step in the journey of a thousand miles, right? Satisfied with my efforts, I closed Outlook and moved on to something else… and promptly forgot all about my new task list.
Or so I thought.
Bitten once again by the organizational bug this past week, I guiltily remembered the checklist that had resulted from my previous bout of good intentions. Sighing with frustration at my delinquency, I opened Outlook Tasks to revisit the list and, hopefully, renew my enthusiasm… and was surprised with what I discovered.
- Bookcases purchased and assembled – DONE.
- Books sorted and shelved – DONE.
- Plastic storage boxes purchased – DONE.
- Basement organization – BEGUN.
- Office organization – BEGUN.
…and on and on.
Just the act of taking time to go through the process of making a list – not just in my head, but an actual list – had resulted in progress! Though it seemed like I had abandoned it just as soon as I’d made it, somehow having taken my thoughts a step further to turn them into something tangible had cemented my desires in my brain and moved me forward. Despite the fact that I wasn’t actually making a conscious effort to work through these projects so I could tick them off as complete, things were happening.
So I started digging a little deeper, beyond household chores and into my life’s desires. I pondered what might be important to me, but right now is just a series of wishes, or hopes, or vague concepts floating around in my mind, undefined and unclaimed.
What if, by making time to think them through and write them down, some of them “stuck” – just like my task list – and put the wheels in motion?
What if, by taking that first step, I set myself on a path that is at this moment nothing more than a dream?
What if, by creating a list, I began to reshape my life?
The possibilities are endless, the potential is dizzying, and the only thing that can stop me is inaction.
So enough with the what ifs. Enough with tripping over self-made stumbling blocks of laziness and fear. Enough with dreaming instead of doing.
It’s time to define my desires and, by doing so, start making things happen.
How do you turn your dreams into reality?