Reflection: I’ve been thinking recently that I wouldn’t mind being listless for a while. I don’t mean in the traditional sense of the word: lethargic, apathetic, or weary. Nor do I mean without a list of things to do – although that would be welcome on occasion.
What I’m actually referring to is the proliferation of lists that circulate on social media and grace the covers of books and magazines everywhere. Here are a few recent examples:
- 14 Things You Should Do On Your Lunch Break Every Day
- 17 Things Extremely Happy People Say Every Day
- 18 Things Highly Creative People Do Differently
- 22 Quick Habits to Add To Your Daily Morning Routine
- 30 Things To Start Doing For Yourself – or its sister list: 30 Things To Stop Doing To Yourself
Add ‘em up. I’m exhausted just thinking about it.
I know these lists are published with the best of intentions – mostly to energize or inspire. And I grant you there is valuable advice in many of them. Heck, I’ve even created a few of these types of lists myself.
But here’s my challenge. When I spend too much time paying attention to these lists, I find myself in Tower of Pisa mode – tilted and off balance. I feel less effective and more inadequate because I’m not doing more or behaving differently.
You, too, might find yourself listing just a tad under the weight of what the advice aggregators believe we could or should be doing.
Action: With all these voices whispering instructions in your ear and putting ideas in your head, it’s hard to hear the one still quite voice that counts the most. That would be your own. (more…)