I have a bad habit of checking out way more books from the library than I can actually read in the alloted time. Ever since I can remember, I’ve always come home with a stack of books, most of which go unread.
The same happened last weekend, but determined to forge ahead with my de-cluttering goals, I wanted to return the books I knew I wouldn’t get to and instead put them on my “books to read” list. To decide whether a book would stay or go (at least for now), I read the first few pages and see if it draws me in or not.
The third or fourth book I picked up was Plain and Simple by Sue Bender, which was listed as one of my recommendations on goodreads. (It seems weird, but would you really expect anything different from me at this point?)
By page 7, I knew this book wasn’t going back. It seems to be perfect for my emotional wellness month. That being the case, I wanted to share what it was that drew me in:
A tyranny of lists engulfed me. The lists created the illusion that my life was full.
I would wake up at five a.m. eager to begin. The first thing I did was to compose my Things to Do list. This gave me great pleasure, even though the list was nothing more than a superimposed heap of choices, representing all the things I enjoyed doing and all the things I had to do, crowding and bumping against each other. Any organized person would have said, ‘This is ridiculous. It’s unrealistic. No one could accomplish so many things in one day.’
Sometimes I would stop in the middle of the day, when the scene on the page looked especially chaotic, and rewrite the list, never thinking to take anything off, but hoping the newly transformed neat rows would overcome my feelings of being overwhelmed. It wa a balancing act on one foot – even when I was doing something I enjoyed, my mind jumped about, thinking of what was next on my list.
I never thought to stop and ask myself, ‘What really matters?’ Instead, I gave everything equal weight. I had no way to select what was important and what was not. …
She went on to describe more traits that naturally fit my Type A personality. Ergo, I’m hooked. At least for now. (I’m also sad to admit that I put reading this book on my to-do list for the week…. Old habits die hard!)