But if you’re one of the busy Westerners that seem to fill their waking hours with innumerable tasks and responsibilities, you may have discovered the organisational benefits of list-making.
I highlight Westerners, as opposed to those from the East, because research has shown that it is us dwellers on the Atlantic side that buzz around like busy bees whilst oriental people are more likely to take a chill pill when it comes to planning their day.
Lists appear everywhere – in gardening we find lists of jobs to do for the month, lists of garden tools that you should have, lists of the top ten influential gardeners and lists of plants for this and that – the list is endless (excuse the pun!).
You can even buy specially designed notepads for gardeners – maybe you received one for Christmas? Padblocks have a number to choose from – see http://www.padblocks.com/browse_647. Handy magnetic-backed varieties are available to stick to your fridge so you really can’t forget about those must-do jobs.
It is well documented that any list with over seven tasks is likely to overload the mind and be ignored. Procrastination is too much of a temptation – “I’ll never be able to do all that”. So even whilst making your list you need to be prioritising and only writing down the most important of tasks.
When it comes to gardening lists, some tasks are so regular as to almost create boredom when written down. We know the garden needs constant weeding, we know the clematis needs dead-heading and we know we have to do something (whatever our personal method is) about the slugs. By adding these to a list, it is purely a paper exercise, and not a practical one.
Richard Branson recently wrote about lists. Now he’s a man who gets things done! His lists include ‘lists of companies to set up’ and he confesses to adding totally far-off, outlandish goals. His method is to work through his lists methodically, ticking them as he goes and helping his plans to take shape.
If you want to take a leaf out of Sir Richard’s notebook, go to http://www.virgin.com/richard-branson/blog/top-10-tips-for-making-lists. And you may just turn into an entrepreneurial gardener.