It’s a Great Day to Do That 1 Thing

You know that 1 thing  you have to do that only “needs” to be done “at some point” or “in the future” or “when you get around to it” and so you never actually do it?

If you’re the list-keeping type, maybe it stays on your list, at the bottom, and gets transferred week to week. Or maybe it is just on a list in your head, and sometimes you think of it when you are in the shower or on the john or in the car or on the train or running, if that’s a thing you do, or in bed drifting off to sleep.

At at those very opportune times, when you are most likely to be able to do that 1 thing that you need to do but not direly, you think:  “Oh, yeah, that thank you note.” Or, “Oh yeah, call the landlord to fix the door that is falling of its hinges.” Or “Oh yeah, call and cancel car insurance for the car I  now longer own.”  [INSERT YOUR 1 THING HERE.]

Anyway, that 1 thing. The worst part about that 1 thing is that when you finally do it, when you finally do send the note or call your landlord or cancel your insurance or WHATEVER, it takes  THE TINIEST FRACTION of the time that you have spent thinking about it. I think Thursday mornings might be a good time to do that 1 thing. Thursday mornings at 10 a.m. We are too late this week, oh drat. But just plant that seed for next week. Thursday morning, 10 a.m. You’re going to stop what you’re doing, take five minutes, and do that 1 thing you’ve been dreading doing or avoiding doing or whatever. I think a week is enough to mentally prepare. Do you?

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33 Comments / Post A Comment

the problem is when you get behind on doing all your one things and they add up into many things! such as:

-make dentist appointment
-make doctor’s appointment
-sign dog up for obedience school

that’s THREE five minute tasks I have to somehow accomplish in my super busy day.

okay i JUST signed my dog up for obedience. Logan you’re CHANGING MY LIFE over here.

(notice i sidestepped the two more urgent tasks)

Renleigh (#2,110)

That reminds me, I need to get my prescription refilled. Stupid once-weekly meds, you are very easy to forget about. I like this “1 Thing” idea, though I’ll have to pick a different time for it. Dear The Billfold, I love how you make me believe I can do stuff.

Crank (#394)

@Renleigh Prescriptions! Thanks for the reminder.

Jellybish (#560)

Thanks for inspiring me to finally order my new contacts!

selenana (#673)

@Jellybish Ugh I need new contacts too. But it’s an hour thing and not a five minute thing, because I have to go into the shop. Been wearing this last pair of disposables for waaaay longer than a month.

It’s 10:02 on the West Coast right now!!! I’m going to clean my desk… oh! Just found a post it note to call the hardware store and ask for a copy of the receipt… oh! Just saw the voicemail on my phone from my boss asking for an updated calendar… oh! Just realized it’s mid-September and I need to buy 2 wedding gifts for next month before the registry is dwindled down to hand towels and mixer attachments… oh! The internet is here! Maybe I’ll do all this stuff next Thursday at 10 am.

oiseau (#1,830)

My life is a never-ending list of tasks. Some days I just take a nap and avoid all of them. Some days is most days. Get it together, oiseau!

Megano! (#124)

@oiseau Yeah, me too. I should really stop doing that.

Sarah H. (#408)

My one thing involves a trip to the DMV… ugh.

Brunhilde (#78)

@Sarah H. My one thing from two years ago was to get my license renewed. I did not do it, and now I have not had a license for almost two years. Because my one thing has turned into a lot of things, one of them involving obtaining use of a vehicle and re-taking my driver’s test. Ugh.

lrodrigue (#1,315)

my 1 thing was scrape melted cheese off of the wax paper that my breakfast sandwich came wrapped in using 1 fork, in public

For me, that one thing is laundry. I always, always hate doing it. Except instead of taking “THE TINIEST FRACTION of the time that you have spent thinking about it” it takes HOURS.

honey cowl (#1,510)

Oh man, my one thing has been on my to-do list for weeks. Logan, HOW DO YOU KNOW ME SO WELL?

kellyography (#250)

My favorite thing is crossing stuff off to-do lists. Today I have only crossed off two, but other people are in the way of my crossing off more, so, I’m taking a break from productivity.

@kellyography I looove crossing off to-do lists. I frequently write things down after I’ve accomplished them just to have the satisfaction of crossing it off. my dad is even worse (better? more addicted?), he’ll draw a little bubble next to the task and fill it in halfway when the task is half-done.

rimy (#2,163)

@kellyography Sometimes I find to-do lists I wrote months ago and manaiacally check everything off. So satisfying!

@redheaded&crazy writing things down that i’ve already done is basically the only way i ever get to cross anything out. and it feels GREAT

sockhopbop (#764)

@redheaded&crazy I like to aim real low too, just so that I know there’ll be a couple things to check off at the end of the day. “Eat dinner?” “Brush teeth?” I’ve got this in the bag.

selenana (#673)

@redheaded&crazy I do this too. I try to at least pair it with accomplishing at least one new little thing so it doesn’t feel too much like cheating.

editrickster (#279)

@kellyography I write ‘Make a list’ at the top of mine.

I also include things like ‘pet the cats’ and ‘eat lunch’ so I don’t forget to stop and smell the roses.

editrickster (#279)

@editrickster Also, when I read this earlier I called and renewed my prescription. Way to go, Logan!

cryptolect (#1,135)

But how am I going to schedule a driving lesson for Thursday morning? I don’t think this plan is going to work for me. I should probably give up on driving.

ciphressinchief (#1,880)

I did not believe anything would EVER get me to call my dentist and make an appointment to get a new retainer, but LOGAN YOU HAVE PROVED ME WRONG.

@ciphressinchief hmph show off

fantod (#1,929)

Oh man, it’s so on! New toilet handle here I come!

ennaenirehtac (#199)

yesyesyesyes

I can’t believe you posted this without reference to this song! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bbqVg_23otg

the rat lady (#785)

Changed my renter’s insurance to cover my new address! Logan, you’re the best.

PS. Obviously, you are not a golfer.

sony_b (#225)

I am THE WORST at doing my expense reports. I have corporate credit cards to pay for everything but I still have to do a report to justify the expense. I have spent over a hundred bucks on late fees because I am too lazy to take a picture of a receipt and email it to accounting. Right now there is one from July hanging over my head. Also booking travel. I will do both of those things. Right after this nap….

selenana (#673)

I also use teuxdeux sometimes, because it bumps the un-crossed off things to the next day.

citizenchristy (#4,122)

This is ongoing but I need to filter out some more clothing. The amount I own disgusts me every time I do my laundry. And it feels more urgent now because of this post. THANKS, LOGAN, YOU LIFE-CHANGER, YOU!

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