Too Many Things To Do

I have too many things to do. And I’m not talking about the boring, annoying, dull, menial tasks of work or uni, no, I’m talking about creative and fun and crafty things. GOOD things. I have too many GOOD things to do and I am completely paralysed by it all*. So, instead of starting one of the many things I could be doing, I decided to sit down and write about how I’ve got so many things I could be doing.

Genius.

But I figure if I write about it, I can vent my feelings and get all my thoughts out of my brain and written down. By creating a list of things I need to do, I can also be held accountable (at least a little bit, to the People of the Internet). See, I think it is actually a pretty smart idea.

The Many Things I Would Like To Do

  • Repot Stanley, my succulent who lives at uni. I’ve brought him home over the holidays and he desperately needs a good repotting.
  • Take photos, just for funsies.
  • Read at least some of the eleven books I need to finish to meet my reading challenge. Yes, ELEVEN. Shut up.
  • Get sewing! I’ve got a ridiculous amount of ideas for things to sew and they’re all so exciting! This in and of itself is a good example of how I’m paralysed by too many options. (I was going to make a bad joke about choice-paralysis inception but I feel those jokes have been overdone so I just explained the joke instead. Good.)
  • Start sketching again. And maybe painting.
  • Write about my PhD, creativity, life – all those good things – on this here blog.
  • Decide what I want for my blog next year.
  • Start art journalling.

Blargh. I’m tired just from typing up that list. But I can see that I just need to cool my jets and focus on one thing at a time. I think I might try and focus on the sewing side of things for a little while at first, and see if I can at least make a small dint in my “to read” pile by going to bed early and reading.

Do you ever feel like there’s just too much shit to get done? Good or bad shit? I also have a bad shit version of the above list but that’s far less interesting and infinitely more stressful so I chose not to think about it. I know this experience I’ve just outlined is not a novel one, so don’t tell me I’m alone in this! Don’t leave me hanging guys! Maybe you’re feeling overwhelmed by choice right now? Let me know!

Jacquie

*It is actually a thing that happens. There are journal articles explaining research about it but there’s also a really interesting TEDtalk if you’re keen to know more. Fun fact: this is actually one of the assignment topics I run in the psychology unit I teach at uni.

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8 comments

  1. Carolyn

    Oh, I completely get the paralysis of too much to do. I see it in my daughter when she is overwhelmed with school work and her whole perfectionism/procrastination issues kick in and she can’t tackle anything. Will check out that TED talk! I think doing a list is good – you can visualise it, break it down and take a nice methodical approach. And putting it out there on the internet does make you a bit accountable. I did one here http://irisandedie.com/2015/12/03/im-making-a-list/. So far I have ticks against The Honourable Woman and Suffragette! I think sometimes you just have to give the list a bit of a chop, too, because realistically there is too much there. What do you think?

    Reply

    1. birdandfox

      Yes, perfectionism is a nasty thing sometimes, and works well together with procrastination! Lists are extremely helpful but do sometimes need to be chopped. A good slash and burn session for all the things that really just aren’t realistic is good for the soul, I say! Good on you for ticking things off your December list. I didn’t even realise Suffragette was out! I thought December 31st was the release date. Goodness me, I need to go and see that immediately!

      Reply

  2. Carolyn

    I saw an advance screening at Lido in Hawthorn on Friday – maybe there are others too?

    Reply

    1. birdandfox

      Ooh maybe! I’ll keep an eye out. Thanks Carolyn!

      Reply

  3. Robyna

    Feeling paralysed by my mundane list at the moment, nevertheless the creative stuff! Looking forward to the new year and some space.

    Reply

    1. birdandfox

      It’s a bit that way, isn’t it! This time of year is just crazy. Good luck with it all and hope you enjoy the holidays ๐Ÿ˜Š

      Reply

  4. Isabel

    Jacquie! You are so far from alone in this feeling. I get like that all the time, especially w the ‘fun stuff’ list. When it’s things you WANT to do you can feel even worse because you’re like ‘I’ve been hanging out to do all these things and now I have the time but what do I choose awmagawd I’m just going to put a pillow over my head and not do anything’…! Today I made a list and the first item was ‘Call Mark re job’ which I was scared to do, hands-shakingly scared, so I just DID THAT FIRST and got it out of the way and off my list and then I could relax. Ah the relief that comes from just choosing where to start and starting. I wish you happy reading/sewing/re-potting xxx

    Reply

    1. birdandfox

      Yes! You’ve described it perfectly, Isabel! Glad it’s not just me. I think there’s a famous quote by Mark Twain where he recommended people started their days by “eating their frog”, or the worst thing on your to do list, then the rest of your day will be peachy. That’s my interpretation of it anyway! Good on you for eating your frog! (Also, good luck for the job, if that’s what that was and if I may be so nosey). I am officially on holidays since last night so I’ve slowly started working my way down my list ๐Ÿ˜€ Thanks Isabel! x

      Reply

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