When do you actually “do” what’s on your to “do” list?
Does it help you to make those lists? Or hurt you?
I’m on the fence about whether or not making reminders and lists and checkboxes are good or bad. I use a variety of reminder apps, notebooks, scribbles and mental notes to remember to do something later.
But when are you actually going to get to it? Does it help to write them down? Won’t you just remember the important stuff no matter what?
Look up Pennebaker and writing.
That’s all that was in my little reminder. I don’t remember when I jotted it down or why. So tonight, only because I had snoozed and paused and delayed the annoying little pop-up on my phone so many times, I finally looked him up.
Turns out, it looks like he’s right up my alley. Duh. But what did I want to find out about him? How did I find him in the first place? Does that matter? Or is it worth it that I looked him up all of this time later (I’m pretty sure it was months and months ago that I tapped my reminder into my phone). Here are a few of the links I read:
- Writing to Heal: Research shows writing about emotional experiences can have tangible health benefits.
- Writing to Heal: A guided journal for recovering from trauma & emotional upheaval.
- Writing about traumatic, stressful or emotional events has been found to result in improvements in both physical and psychological health, in non-clinical and clinical populations.
- Discover the hidden meanings behind what people write and say, and find out how you can use therapeutic writing to change — or even save — your own life.
You get the idea. I bet I was doing research into yet even more benefits of writing. Maybe as part of my Write Every Single Day project. As if I needed more reasons, but maybe it was for others who aren’t quite convinced that a daily writing habit is good for them. Well, according to the research by Pennebaker, it seems that it’s even more beneficial than I thought.
But he specifically is talking about writing through a trauma or for healing. He doesn’t want you dwell on it forever, just four days.
Over the next four days, write about your deepest emotions and thoughts about the emotional upheaval that has been influencing your life the most. In your writing, really let go and explore the event and how it has affected you. You might tie this experience to your childhood, your relationship with your parents, people you have loved or love now, or even your career. Write continuously for 20 minutes.
So, does it help or hinder to jot down those little reminders to yourself to do something?