I could, and have, made lists of things in my life that were suboptimal (bad) in a way to mentally spank myself into action. Maybe the lists are a way of self-soothing too – like if I document all the issues then I can tackle them in an orderly fashion rather than having them swirl in my head.
But it doesn’t work that way. Instead what happens is I get overwhelmed. Because on that kind of a day, the improvement opportunities list (list of things that are NOT okay as they are) looks something like this: House, Work, Relationship, Body, Money.
So since that’s too much then I might discount it all and put the list in the drawer. Make up a story that it’s ok there’s a leak in the bathroom and the curtains in the guestroom are too short and have been for years. Decide it’s ok not to charge money for work, or live without sharing my most secret dreams with my partner, or workout on a regular basis, or refinance the mortgage even though we could save save save.
It’s gotta be chunked out. Being okay with how things are is not the same as giving up on ever improving them. It just means I’m gonna be kinder to myself and more patient with myself about the how and the when of it all.
Ok, there’s some stuff. Ok, what really matters to me? That’s the list. And then I gotta work that every day bit by bit and not get distracted by recovering sofas or learning to make gluten-free brownies, which are not important to me though they are important to some of my best friends. I gotta give myself credit for staying the course and respect my own choices about what matters and what doesn’t. And I've gotta not get lost in improvement to the point where I forget to enjoy. Some days, like maybe today, I'll give myself permission to not improve anything and just enjoy what is.