This post is sponsored by the word ‘list’.
So, the thing about writing a book that involves a list, is that people keep asking you what’s written on your own. I think I’ve been asked this question about eight times this week, and my answer tends to change depending on who has asked me. In short, I have no idea.
I love lists. I love stationary. I love notepads, and I LOVE my little book of lists that I got for my birthday last year. There are few things I find more satisfying that ticking items off a list (and yes, I definitely add things on the list that I know I’ve already done just so I can tick them off like the enormous show off I am). I was thrilled when my Editor suggested adding more lists into The List That Changed My Life (like shopping lists and to do lists). I love them. I could easily reel off what’s on my current ‘to do’ list, although it would be very very dull and not worthy of a blog post. It wouldn’t even be worthy of a tweet, and my tweeting standards are low. (I’m looking at you, past tweeting habits about clean bed sheets and £7 jeans).
But whenever someone asks me my own bucket list, that’s when my brain shrivels up and only offers me outrageous answers that I would never want to do ever (GET A SLEEVE TATTOO) or painfully dull ones (ORGANISE MY FINANCES INTO A COLOUR COORDINATED SPREAD SHEET). I somehow bumble some mad answer, trying not to commit to anything that will come back to haunt me, and then want to kick myself afterwards for being so unprepared and goofy.
I am a mixture of Amy and Georgia, but when it comes to getting out of my comfort zone, I hate to admit I’d be hanging out with Georgia watching The X Factor. I’m a creature of habit. I like what I know and I know what I like. I spend so much of my time organising things that I do like (lucky me) that I rarely sit down and think about things that I should do, that would push me out of my comfort zone. I’m so comfortable in my comfort zone, sometimes I wonder if I’d actually be able to get out of it. It’s like I’ve fallen in a huge beanbag after eating my body weight in lasagne. I could get out, but it would take a hell of a lot of wiggling and I’d probably get indigestion.
As I realise this and blink back at the kind person whose asked me, panic always sparks in my mind as I try and think of a cool, interesting answer. Christ, I always think, how did I get so boring? Why don’t I have a single thing I can say that’s interesting? Why don’t I want to go to Thailand?
I spent a lot of my early twenties trying to be cool, trying to think of mad answers to questions that would impress people and not unveil me as the closet grandma I actually am. But then, in the lead up to the publication of The List That Changed My Life, I started to receive other people’s lists. They weren’t full of grand, crazy experiences or wild adventures. They were actually quite simple. The most common one that appeared in each hand written list was to be happy, to be positive and to be mindful.
One answer I always give, and always meant, is that I want to ensure that I say ‘yes’ to as much as possible (within reason, obviously) and to embrace each bump and dip life throws my way. If I channel this mentality, then I’m hoping I’ll look back on my life and realise I’ve ticked some huge things off my list before I even had the chance to add them.
(Also, if anything I write ever gets to number 1 I will jump out of a plane. I think. Maybe. Yeah? Don’t tell my Mum.)