It’s been a while. I’ve had a lot of thoughts to share, but not so much energy to share them. A lot has happened in the last ten months, and my brain went on vacation. It didn’t invite the rest of me, and I’m a little bitter about that. The only thing I’ve been crushing lately is candy. But husband’s treatment is done, his first post-treatment scan was clear, and now it’s time to get back into life. Is my blog life? That is yet to be decided and largely hinges on whether or not I can figure out the new format on WordPress. But it’s time to actually start living again. I’m ready.
A few weeks ago, I signed up for a challenge by Jon Acuff to get the ball rolling. If you’re not familiar with him, he’s a personal development speaker and writer. He has done things, and he likes queso. His writing is very accessible, and his books are short and to the point. His tips make sense. And he’s funny. Anyway, I signed up for a goals challenge, and I liked it. So I signed up for his new course called “Full Potential.” I also started listening to his podcast.
As I listened to the podcast, I started making a reading list of books that were mentioned in the podcast, either by the host or by the guest. This week, I have read Born to Win by Zig Ziglar, Soundtracks, by Jon Acuff, and Eat That Frog by Brian Tracy. The last one is REALLY short, but it gets right to the point. Based on the Mark Twain quote “Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day,” Eat That Frog lists 21 ways to tackle the onerous tasks.
There’s one thing all of these experts have in common. More than one thing, really, but this one thing especially. The most effective people are always working off of to-do lists. It’s how they stay organized and focused, and it’s the best way to keep track of what frogs are left to eat. So I have made some lists. I used the ColorNote app to organize daily lists for work because I can have my lists in my pocket, and it’s easy to cross stuff off. It’s also easy to uncross the stuff so that I can reuse the list.
I’m eating frogs. I’ve stumbled, one foot in front of the other, for a year, and I want to get back to who I was. So I make my list, and I eat my frogs. The goal is to free up as much time as possible for the things I am passionate about. What I’ve learned, though, is that at this moment, I’m passionate about nothing. I don’t love anything. And I realized that I am more depressed than I thought I was because if you know me, you know there’s a lot of stuff I normally dearly love. Today, I don’t care about diddly squat. But future me will.
I know that this depression is a biological thing, a combination of life stressors and biology (this weird genetic liver thing I have can express in some serious psych symptoms. I know that this will pass because I have dealt with it for years. It will pass. Today, I don’t give a rat’s hind parts if I sink or swim, but tomorrow I might And the lists I am making may help.
There’s something about seeing a list of stuff crossed off at the end of the day or the week or the month. I might not care that I did it, I might not be interested in thinking about the end results right now, but I know that not doing anything at all makes me feel a million times worse. So I have my list of frogs. They might be tiny ones right now. But I am trying.
Today I did a big one. I went to the grocery store last night, and there was an error on my receipt, and customer service was closed. That meant I had to go back today if I wanted the refund. And I did it. I got my $8 back. Today, I went for a walk. I took my older kids to an open-air market. I planned out the things I want to get done this week, AND when I am going to do them. Meals are planned for the week. I crossed things off my list. Tomorrow, I will, too. One day at a time, one list at a time, one tiny item at a time. I am going to eat some frogs.