This Facebook meme made me laugh the other day, so I shared it so my friends and family could laugh too. “Wouldn’t it be funny / cool / amazing to cross things off my own To Do list!” I thought to myself. “Very cheeky… but how freeing!”
And then I scrolled on, and life continued.
My thoughts kept returning to that idea though. Of how cool it would be to have that freedom.
And then yesterday, making space on a bookshelf by working out what books I’d probably never read again and deciding to donate them, it hit me.
Why not? Why shouldn’t I do that?
Most items on my To Do list are just ones that I wrote there anyway! So will the world end if I remove them without doing them? Or am I, in fact, just decluttering my life of self-imposed obligations, expectations and deadlines?
I’m a fan of the TV series Space Invaders.
In it, de-cluttering guru Peter Walsh calls ‘cluttter’ anything which gets between what my life looks like now, and what I want my life to look like (a bad paraphrase, but that’s how full my mind is right now).
Now those books I’d collected, with the idea of reading them or re-reading them at some point – the hard, physical objects collecting dust on my shelf – were clutter.
But who’s to say that clutter is just physical? Can’t mental items – thoughts, expectations and obligations which sit there, collecting dust on the shelves of my brain – be just as much ‘clutter’ as physical clutter?
So: “Crossing things off my to do list. I didn’t do them. I just don’t want them on my list any more…” I’m giving myself permission to do this. Those self-imposed expectations of ‘I want to do THIS by THIS DATE’? I’m deciding that – for me at least – it’s okay to let these things go. Maybe if they’re not helping me, they’re hurting me? I’m certainly feeling more free, just even thinking about it!
May you have a ‘freeing’ week yourself, dear Reader 🙂
[And if you’d like someone else’s permission to free yourself of self-imposed obligations and expectations, here it is: have mine!]
See you Sunday 🙂