The thing about lists

So I woke up earlier than my usual wake up time today and was just going to open up my laptop to work on a document when I stumbled upon an old diary of mine. Now my diaries are usually full of notes from meetings, fieldwork and transcripts [which btw is my life now]!!

But, this was a diary from a year ago. I was a year younger and slightly more honest and maybe even more gullible. So I opened the diary and found notes of secret conversations I had with my friends and colleagues on the last few pages and some lists on the first few pages. The best thing about this diary was that it was equally interesting whether you started from the first page or the last.

So I started from the first page and this is what I found

· Number of post-its with companies to which I wanted to apply

· Number of fellowships where I wanted to apply

· Number of numbers who I wanted to contact regarding jobs and openings

· Number of lists with to-do’s — daily, monthly, yearly, life, professional, home etc etc

But here’s what I didn’t find

· A list where I wrote what I really wanted out of life — happiness, success, money or whatever it was

· Be honest — to self and others [and where it matters the most]

· A list of friends I wanted to catch up with

· A list of places I wanted to visit

· A list of recipes I wanted to try

· A list of guys I wanted to date — ethnicity, country, height etc

And even more surprisingly, I didn’t find a “not-to-do list”. Now after years of making lists and having diaries with notes and post-its overflowing with pending tasks, I realized that one list would’ve made all the difference. When did I forget to write to “never to go to bed without kissing my loved ones” or “never to let life take over me” or “never to let a crappy job ruin my happiness” or “never to allow myself to be put down by others opinions”.

Somewhere between my work deadlines and self-created timelines, one forgot to actually take time out to live and do nothing.

So here’s my revised to-do:

· Dress up like I’m going to the prom everyday

· Take myself out on romantic dates

· Treat myself to unhealthy food every once in a while

· Tell the people I love that I love them

· Do nothing once in a while, admire the sky or the birds or pollution [I live in Delhi, duh]

· Trip to Janpath every week for inner peace

· Meet friends once a week and know what’s new and old

And here’s a don’t-do:

· Don’t allow myself to put off by small failures

· Don’t let others make me feel small or irrelevant

· Don’t allow life to take over me

· Don’t let a job decide my happiness

Is there anything you’d like to pick up from here for yourself or give me suggestions?

Okay, I gotta go now!! Work calls !!