Sep 10, 2010

Confessions of a Compulsive List Maker

I have a confession to make. I am addicted to making lists. Actually if compulsive list making was a type of OCD, I would be in a padded cell by now. Every morning when most of mankind is groping for their morning cuppa my fingers are itching not towards my cup of coffee but for a pen and paper. I don’t rest in peace till I have written down a list of everything I want to accomplish through the day. It’s not caffeine that gives me my morning kick but making lists.
I have a separate list for everything – grocery shopping, clothes shopping, things I need to clean and sort, books I want to read, cuisines I want to try, places I want to visit, favorite websites. I even have a list of topics I want to blog about. My computer at work has a Post-It with a list for tasks I need to accomplish that day or week. I can face any situation in life provided I have a list ready. At the doctors’ clinic, I am known to whip out a list and ask questions from it much to the doctor’s amusement. I even make lists about what to pack whenever I travel. Once for a cousins wedding, I made a list of what to wear when, and which accessory to wear with which dress. Before meeting a close friend or family member I make a list of things I absolutely must tell them about. For those wondering, yes my memory is in absolute tip top condition thank you. Give me any memory test and I will pass with flying colors ! Its just that whenever you meet someone after a long time you get so carried away that you might forget to mention a few important things that happened in their absence.
And I am a master organizer of these lists. The items in my shopping lists are categorized according to each shop I will visit or sometimes even down to the items in the same aisle getting listed together. I have been known to berate shop attendants when they change the way things are placed on their shelves because it just about ruins my whole list!
Send me shopping without a list and it’s very probable that I will come back with a lot of things that I don’t need and nothing of what I need. If you want me to do something for you, better make me write it down! Important things in my lists are double underlined and have arrows pointing towards them.
You can never make me take a decision unless I have listed down every pros and cons of the issue. My friends are so exasperated with me that they think I need to join a List Makers Anonymous to cure myself of this malady. I rather think it’s a neat habit. And anyway I got it from my mother. She is an obsessive list maker and she got me hooked to it when I was really young. Mom says she got it from her dad. So if anything is to be blamed its heredity. But I am sure I am not alone in this. I am sure most of you make such lists too. Don’t you? Umm you DO Don’t You !
Oh Well I guess I better write down “Find List Makers Anonymous” on my list and double underline it !


  1. Ruchira, great post. I too must confess that I am a list maker as well. Whenever I have to go for shopping or meet people I keep having these phobias that I am forgetting something or something has slipped my mind and it keeps gnawing till I can recall it. It is extremely uncomfortable and annoying as my mind gets diverted, so I have turned to making list, I fact I always carry a pocket sized note pad with me to keep jotting done list items. Thanks for such a brilliant post and sharing this List making issue.

  2. @navneet - yes I will be lost without lists ! Good to know there are others in the world like me :)

  3. Ha Ha...Welcome to the group..I was literally nodding to all the points you said! I write down every such minute tasks in a list of paper. What I dont write is -when I should take bath, or when I should go to Loo! :) :)

    Sometimes, making a small list will help us be focus-oriented, especially when it comes to shopping.And to make sure that we don't miss out anything! It's definitely not a Obsessive-compulsive disorder, atleast to me :)

  4. So how about in adding in one of your lists that you have to meet me? Arrow should point towards the nearest the line done esp for you :-)

    Great post! Keep writing.....

  5. @Vaish- yes it does make you focus oriented !Glad u think so too !

    @Jayanti - welcome to the blog ! and I dont need to write down meeting you down on a list! I know Its long overdue :)

  6. I find that I asked the question on the wrong post and you answered too! Ok Capri, that list making habit of yours made me ask the question! :)

  7. Nice post... zi too make lists but only for shopping and before travelling isnce it saves time and makes sure I don't forget anything...bdw I loved the cartoon too :)

  8. Great information. Thanks for providing us such a useful information. Keep up the good work and continue providing us more quality information from time to time.Thank you!
    Compulsive Shopping



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